Sadie Family Wines The Old Vine Series 2021

By , 20 July 2022



Eben Sadie says of The Old Vine Series wines from the 2021 vintage that he initially was “not too positive” about the line-up on account of how “very quiet” the wines appeared. “I felt the 2020 wines were the strongest release in the history of the Domaine and I feared I was going to have to live in their shadow for the rest of my life”. Having recently tasted the 2021s, Sadie has no reason for concern. Tasting notes and ratings as follows:

Skerpioen 2021
From a Swartland vineyard co-planted to Chenin Blanc and Palamino. Expressive and arresting aromatics of pear, peach and citrus, hay and herbs plus an overlay of flinty reduction. The palate shows good depth of fruit, a great line of acidity and a pithy finish. Pure, lithe and balanced, this is most satisfying to drink.

CE’s rating: 95/100.

‘T Voetpad 2021
From a Swartland field blend of Chenin Blanc, Palomino, Semillon Blanc and Gris. A tantalising nose with top notes of hay and herbs before peach and naartjie plus a hint of wet wool. The palate is relatively lean but still has plenty of detail – good clarity of fruit, fresh acidity and again a pithy finish. Elegant and understated.

CE’s rating: 96/100.

Kokerboom 2021
From Citrusdal Mountain Semillon. Some reduction before lime, green apple and white peach plus fresh herbs and straw on the nose while the palate has great fruit purity, driving acidity and an intensely savoury finish. Super-concentrated and very direct, this is a striking and rather demanding wine.

CE’s rating: 93/100.

Skurfberg 2021
From Citrusdal Mountain Chenin Blanc. Exotic aromatics of peach, citrus, melon, potpourri, hay and spice plus some leesy complexity. The palate is full and forceful (alcohol is 14.1%) with a slightly greasy texture. Good fruit concentration, well integrated acidity and a gently savoury finish. A wine that makes a big impression.

CE’s rating: 94/100.

Mev. Kirsten 2021
From Stellenbosch Chenin Blanc. Some struck-match reduction before peach and citrus plus hints of hay and herbs on the nose. The palate is very pure and focused – great fruit delineation, electric acidity and a very dry finish. A gorgeous wine is that is so very on point. Montrachet-like in the sense of possessing elegance without being insubstantial.

CE’s rating: 98/100.

Soldaat 2021
From Piekenierskloof Grenache. 60% whole-bunch fermentation. Red currant, fynbos, white pepper and a hint of reduction on the nose while the palate is light and fresh with great clarity of fruit, snappy acidity and fine tannins. Intensely flavoured and wonderfully energetic, the finish arrestingly dry.

CE’s rating: 95/100.

Pofadder 2021
From Swartland Cinsault. 50% whole-bunch fermentation. Red cherry, plum, Turkish Delight and some reduction on the nose while the palate is juicy with bright acidity and relatively soft tannins. Generous and already quite accessible.

CE’s rating: 92/100.

Treinspoor 2021
From Swartland Tinta Barocca. Red and black berries, potpourri, fynbos and spice on the nose while the palate shows dense fruit, fresh acidity and relatively firm tannins, the finish deeply savoury. Well balanced and characterful, this seems to have more focus than some previous vintages.

CE’s rating: 93/100.

Check out our South African wine ratings database.


8 comment(s)

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    Gareth | 26 July 2022

    I’m looking for some ‘t Voetpad ’21, have Kokerboom and some others.
    Anyone up for a trade?

    Thomas | 22 July 2022

    Both Greg and Christian give excellent answers here I think. Very much on point with the views expressed in Christian’s recent “Scoring is boring but necessary” piece. Scoring is inherently subjective. Anyone who thinks otherwise is deluding themselves. We don’t want critics to all be the same. We want a diversity of views and opinions. It reminds me of that old cliche repeated ad nauseum in rugby press conferences: we don’t mind if the referee has a different interpretation, as long as he is consistent in applying that interpretation.

    Angela Lloyd | 22 July 2022

    Eben has commented on the amount of tlc & money invested in this vineyard & how it’s now repaying with stellar wines. The last two vintages, ’19 & ’20 both received 98 points in Platter when I was the taster; I can’t see why ’21 shouldn’t also receive a s imilar score (sadly, not under my watch). I have yet to taste the wine but feel confident in Christian’s assessment.

    Greg Sherwood | 20 July 2022

    I’m not sure of Christian’s philosphy but for me, I score a young wine max 98+ most of the time with the odd exception allowing the Mullineux Olerasay No.2 a 99/100 and just recently, I scored the Warre’s 2020 a 99/100 as it was so overwhelming for the senses. But my personal position is that 98 should realistically be the top score for a young wine that you KNOW will improve. I suppose Parker would argue that he give 100s and then when they are better and mature they are still 100… while the odd one falls apart and he down rates it to 97 or 98.

    It is all a bit splitting hairs but I prefer to give 100 points to mature classics that have done their apprenticeship, done the hard yards in bottle and then come out fighting! My examples… for me… Libertas 1957… GS 66…. Sassicaia 85… Mouton 82. There are more but you catch my drift.

    Every scorer has their level, and I certainly recognise that if Christian scores a wine over 95, it should be pretty bloody good… especially if its a Cabernet or Cabernet based blend. 97 or 98 simply recognises a wines inate pedigree and greatness that is built into its DNA… a la Mev Kirsten from Sadie.

    James Bosenberg | 20 July 2022

    Hey Christian,

    I’ve noticed you score quite a few wines 98 points (when i look at your ratings list of over 8000 wines, including this mvr. Kirsten, 20 wines have got that score) but nothing above. 98/100 is outstanding no matter what, but do you consider 98 to be your peak score? I only ask because I’m sure I’ve read an article of yours where you don’t believe a wine to ever be perfect, i stand to be corrected on this!

    Or have you simply not tasted a wine deemed to be a perfect example of it’s kind?

      Christian Eedes | 22 July 2022

      Hi James, To my mind, the notion of a “perfect” wine that a score of 100 points implies is philosophically problematic. That said, the quality gains that are being made at the top of the SA wine industry are such that it’s not impossible that I might yet encounter something worthy of the ultimate accolade. The thing is once granted, there’s no going back and I’m inclined to remain cautious for now…

        James Bosenberg | 22 July 2022

        Thanks Christian, that helps me understand your scoring better. Your article on ‘scoring is boring but necessary’ is also relevant here and hits the nail on the head.

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