Mother Rock new releases

By , 25 January 2024

Describing Stompie Meyer of Mother Rock as avante-garde is putting it mildly. Operating out of his own cellar on the Piketberg in northern Swartland and applying natural winemaking principles, what he comes up with is NOT mainstream. Tasting notes and ratings for the new releases as follows:

White 2022
Price: R160
Intended to showcase Swartland as a whole. 30% Rousanne, 20% Semillon, 20% Viognier, 15% Chenin Blanc and 15% Grenache Blanc – Roussane to the fore whereas the previous vintage was Chenin driven. 25% skin-fermented. Matured for 18 months in a combination of concrete, old oak and stainless steel. Subtle aromatics of pear, peach, citrus, flowers and herbs plus a hint of reduction. The palate is particularly lean and fresh, perhaps not as detailed as this wine has been in the past. Alc: 11%.

CE’s rating: 91/100.

Brutal White 2022
Price: R250
100% Chenin Blanc. 10 days of skin maceration before pressing, maturation lasting 18 months in concrete. The nose is shy with a slight reduction in evidence. Relatively thick textured although by no means “greasy” with well-integrated acidity and a savoury, slightly grippy finish. Alc: 11.3%.

CE’s rating: 90/100.

Liquid Skin 2022
Price: R250
From a Paardeberg Chenin Blanc vineyard planted in 1984. Skin contact lasting eight months – the longest period yet. Matured for 18 months in concrete. Expressive aromatics of citrus, stone fruit, potpourri, fynbos and spice while the palate is not without weight but also has a great tension about it – punchy acidity and a pithy, super-dry finish. It’s audacious in concept and basically demonstrates everything that’s good about natural wine. Alc: 11.5%.

CE’s rating: 95/100.

Carbonic Pinot Noir 2023
Price: R210

Previously under the JH Meyer range of wines but now part of Mother Rock, this is made from Elands Kloof grapes. Pretty aromatics of cranberry, flowers and fynbos while the palate is light-bodied – pure and fresh with fine tannins. Entirely charming.

CE’s rating: 90/100.

Brutal Red 2023
Price: R250
70% Viognier, 30% Mourvèdre. Co-fermented and matured for 10 months in old oak. The nose has notes of strawberry, peach and potpourri while the palate is lightly fruity with soft acidity – uncomplicated drinking. Alc: 13%.

CE’s rating: 87/100.

Holocene 2022
Price: R235
51% Mourvèdre, 29% Carignan and 20% Grenache Noir. Matured for 18 months in foudre. Red and black berries, flowers, fynbos and a hint of spice. The palate has pure fruit, fresh acidity and crunchy tannins, the finish nicely dry. Invigorating to drink. Alc: 11.5%.

CE’s rating: 92/100.

Check out our South African wine ratings database.


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