Kanonkop Black Label Pinotage 2018

By , 23 October 2020



Stellenbosch property Kanonkop is synonymous with Pinotage and it’s interesting to see how the brand custodians leverage this. How much of a quality differential between the Estate Range 2018 (R430 a bottle) and the pinnacle Black Label 2018 (R1 900 a bottle) for instance? Tasting these wines next to each other, I think the Black Label does offer a little more concentration and complexity but ultimately, the premium that is asked for the Black Label comes down to mystique. Tasting notes and ratings as follows:

Kanonkop Pinotage 2018
From vineyards ranging in age from 31 to 65 years old. Matured for 16 months in French oak, 80% new. Aromatics of violets, plums, cocoa, spice and earth. The palate is juicy and sweet on entry, not without freshness and smooth textured before a finish that is gently savoury.

CE’s rating: 92/100.

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Kanonkop Black Label Pinotage 2018
From a vineyard planted in 1953. Matured for 18 months in French oak, 100% new. Red and black fruit, rose plus attractive oak-derived notes like vanilla and cinnamon. The palate has a dense core of fruit – there’s a winning sweetness initially (although the wine is technically dry with residual sugar measuring 2.5g/l) to go with bright acidity and firm but fine tannins, while the finish is long and dry.

CE’s rating: 94/100.

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8 comment(s)

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    Kwispedoor | 28 October 2020

    Price and mystique aside, I tasted this 2018 Black Label last night and the wine itself is just fabulous. I’d be inclined to score it a bit higher than you, Christian. Are you discriminating against Pinotage because Pinot Noir is its parent? 😉 Just pulling your leg!

    Jeremy | 24 October 2020

    If Kanonkop can sell the wine at a super premium price, then it is not overpriced.
    The market dictates.

    Local | 23 October 2020

    Just spit it out, the wine is overpriced!

    GillesP | 23 October 2020

    For this price, you can acquire a bottle (or a case if you are willing) of Domaine de Chevalier Pessac Leognan 2009. One of the most beautiful Bordeaux from that vintage and now open for business. I know where would be my choice without a second of hesitation.

    Dion | 23 October 2020

    Dear Christian

    Could you expand on what you mean when you say ‘the premium that is asked for the Black Label comes down to mystique.’


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