Journey’s End revisited

By , 6 December 2023



Journey’s End situated just outside Somerset West has enjoyed a good run in our various category reports sponsored by Prescient this year:

  • Ad Infinitum 2022 placed Top 6 with a rating of 94 among the Sauv-Sem Blends tasted as part of the Sauvignon Blanc Report
  • Cape Doctor The Red 2018 placed Top 10 with a rating of 94 in the Cape Bordeaux Red Blend Report
  • V1 2022 placed Top 10 with a rating of 93 in the Chardonnay Report

To re-affirm credentials, a blind tasting was recently hosted to pit the property’s wines against some of the local industry’s best plus one or two international benchmarks.

The flight that was most telling consisted of “Bordeaux Blends”, three local and one original, poured in the following order:

1. Journey’s End Cape Doctor 2018
2. Vilafonté Series C 2021
3. Kanonkop Paul Sauer 2020
4.  Chateau Léoville Poyferré 2018

Context counts for a great deal when it comes to wine assessment. I’ve tasted all three SA wines before and here is how I rated them now and then:

Journey’s End Cape Doctor 2018 – 94 and 94 (blind)
Vilafonté Series C 2021 – 94 and 96 (sighted)
Kanonkop Paul Sauer 2020 – 93 and 93 (sighted)

The Leoville Poyferre 2018 was magnificent, and I rated it 98. Tasting note: Dark berries, violets, earth, oystershell and just a touch of toasty oak. Massive concentration – dense fruit, fresh acidity and densely packed tannins. Precise. Plenty of power but no impression of sweetness or heat, the finish extraordinarily long. Promises much.

My note for Journey’s End, meanwhile, was: Enticing aromatics of red and black berries, violets, earth and oystershell. Medium bodied with fresh acidity and velvet-like tannins. Elegant and resolving nicely.

Where it gets interesting is the quality to price ratio. Retail prices as follows:

Journey’s End Cape Doctor 2018 – R330
Vilafonté Series C 2021 – R1990
Kanonkop Paul Sauer 2020 – R925
Chateau Léoville Poyferré 20182018 – R2 735 (


1 comment(s)

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    PK | 12 December 2023


    Really interesting tasting, but more so is probably the last part of your tasting and scoring and quality:price ratio that has been touched on so many times by so many people. But the question remains, how do you explain to or justify to Jo Public on the street when they have no context, but just read the closing part to your tasting review and get to see the scores along with the pricing. Is it what people are willing to pay, what the wineries are pricing their wines at, supply and demand… or is it just the wine world and like so many things in our beloved world of wine, there is no right or wrong or just any answer for that matter 🙂

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