Tembela Wines maiden releases

By , 19 May 2021

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Banele Vakele of Tembela Wines.

Banele Vakele was born in the Eastern Cape and grew up in Khayelitsha. Fascinated by the ability of a simple berry to produce something as complex as wine, he gained a B. Agric degree from Elsenburg in 2015 before participating in the Cape Winemakers Guild Protégé Programme. In late-2019, he took over as assistant winemaker at Savage Wines and has now launched his own label called Tembela Wines named after his late mother. Tasting note and ratings as follows:

Tembela Verdelho 2020
Price: R230
From Stellenbosch grapes. Matured for 11 months in an old 500-litre barrel. The nose shows apple, naartjie and spice with a hint of leesy reduction in the background while the palate has good depth of flavour with driving acidity and nicely grippy quality to the finish. Long and savoury. Total production: 600 bottles.

CE’s rating: 92/100.

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Tembela Syrah 2020
Price: R250
From Stellenbosch grapes. 30% whole-bunch fermentation and maturation as above. The nose is fiercely peppery but there also notes of red and blackberries as well as fresh herbs while the palate shows striking concentration, punchy acidity and very grippy tannins. Dramatic stuff!

CE’s rating: 90/100.

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  • Roy Roche3 September 2021

    Banele, your 2020 Verdehlo is absolutely delicious. My wife and I just finished a bottle off tonight. Please keep making wines like this..

  • Ashley+Westaway20 May 2021

    Banele certainly is an informed, intelligent and wonderfully friendly young man. I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with him at Savage Wines. I look forward to tasting his wines; they sound splendid.

    • Vic de Valdorf28 May 2021

      Hear hear. I met him when collected a case of wines that was offered as part of the restaurant rescue project last year. He quite happily showed me around and gave me a tasting of a Sav Blanc still in the tank. I’m honoured to have bought a bottle of each of his 2020 wines.

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