Balance and elegance typify wines at the 2012 Paarl Santam Challenge
23 August 2012 by Paarl Santam Shiraz/Chenin Challenge 2012
Wines of richness and elegance, with a heightened balance between fruit
ripeness and acidity characterised the entries in the Paarl Santam
Shiraz/Chenin Challenge for 2012; with clear winners emerging in each
Shiraz class panel chair Nico Vermeulen said that “rich, fresh, vibrant wines made in a newer style” was the panel’s shared opinion of the wines. “To achieve this kind of elegance in a warmer area is a reflection on the winemakers; many of whom are young and up-and-coming,” Nico said. “Paarl’s Shiraz wines show a great versatility, and general potential in a category that I’ve always believed can be South Africa’s best,” he said. “Achieving power and elegance within a single wine is a great opportunity; and something that Paarl can achieve from what we have seen.”
Chenin class panel chair Ken Forrester found “a better balance throughout” among the Chenin Blanc entries, with “better phenolic ripeness and a brisk acidity, tending towards a mineral edge.” The winning wines were chosen unanimously, with relatively little discussion among the panel, Ken said. “Generally the better wines come from the cooler sites, where elevation plays a part,” the Chenin enthusiast noted, “while older vines contribute to concentration”. In general, Ken said, there was great suitability in Paarl to the Shiraz category; however he said “where elevation and aspect come to bear there are some excellent, highly sought-after Chenin Blanc vineyards”.
The winners of the Paarl Santam Shiraz/Chenin Challenge were announced last night, Wednesday 22 August at a gala dinner at the Grande Roche. KWV continued its award-winning run with two wines in the Shiraz top three; including first place, and two wines in the Chenin Blanc top ten. Fairview ranked for three wines in the Shiraz top ten, including second place in the top three. Windmeul, Perdeberg and Nederburg were ranked first to third in the Chenin Blanc category.
Consumer tastings will be held in conjunction with the WineX events in Johannesburg and Cape Town, in October and November respectively. Further details will be announced in the coming months; while advance notification will be made on the Paarl Wine Route Facebook page and on Twitter.
KWV Jean Taillefert Shiraz 2010 (first)
Fairview FV Beacon Shiraz 2009 (second)
KWV Mentors Shiraz 2010 (third)
Fairview Goats Do Roam Goat Roti 2010
Fairview Shiraz 2010
Lanskroon Paul de Villiers Shiraz 2010
Mellasat Dekker's Valley Shiraz 2010
Perdeberg Shiraz Reserve 2010
Rhebokskloof Black Marble Hill Syrah 2010
Rhebokskloof Estate Shiraz 2010
Chenin Blanc results
Windmeul Chenin Blanc 2012 (first)
Perdeberg Chenin Blanc 2012 (second)
Nederburg The Anchorman Chenin Blanc 2011 (third)
Boland Reserve No1 Chenin Blanc 2011
Groot Parys Chenin Blanc, Vatgegis, Wild Yeast 2011
KWV Cathedral Cellar Chenin Blanc 2011
KWV Classic Chenin Blanc 2012
Perdeberg Chenin Blanc Reserve 2011
Simonsvlei Chenin Blanc 2012
Under Oaks Chenin Blanc 2012
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