IWSC – SA Tasting 2012

January 31st, 2012 by karen

I thoroughly enjoyed the informal SA 2012 tasting of IWSC wines hosted at the Grand Roche Hotel last week.

I was glad I got there early as the wines were available on a “pour you own” system with whites warming up quite quickly in the heat we have been experiencing over the past few weeks.  There was also a “top” table at the front of the room offering a few international winners which obviously were also quickly lapped up:)

Since I don’t get to taste a range of international wines too often it was a great opportunity to taste wines from a broad spectrum of countries including France, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, Spain, Italy, Argentina and Italy.  My favourite white of these wines was the Two Sisters Vineyard Riesling 2007 from New Zealand offering a huge intensity of petrol nuances and zesty lime on the nose and tremendous depth.  My favourite red was the Trapiche Finca Las Palmas Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 from Argentina with its purity of fruit absolutely sublime.  One of the notes most apparent with this wine was the “non minty / eucalyptus” character which I am so used to picking up on our Cabs.

Keeping in mind not all the wines were available for tasting here is a short list of my favourites from SA.

Overall favourite of the day was undoubtedly the Klein Constantia Vin de Constance 2006 with the most intriguing winner going to the Simonsig Straw Wine 2009.


  • Flagstone Treaty Tree Reserve 2010 – a wonderful food wine which reminded me of elements of their much loved Happy Hour but with a slightly shorter finish
  • Hamilton Russell Chardonnay 2010 – a wine offering balance and perfection.  A buttery complexity but with fruit acid to stand up against the oak influence and refresh the palate entirely
  • Jordan The Outlier Sauvignon Blanc 2010 – one of my all time favourites the layers and intrigue of this wine, both on nose and palate, keep me coming back for more every time
  • Tokara Director’s Reserve White 2009 – served from a big bottle (magnum) which seemed well suited to this big wine
  • Vondeling Babiana – a crisp, refreshing wine to finish off my flight of whites.  Integrated, balanced but not too serious


  • Naledi Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 – a dense wine offering sweet fruit and dark chocolate with beautiful spices and soft tannin structure
  • Kanonkop offered a lovely range and it was great to taste across various vintages – their Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 & Paul Sauer 2005 reiterated what this estate is capable of
  • Mary Le Bow 2007 – one of the only wines I had not come across before (also from Flagstone). Soft, integrated dark fruit with a subtle meaty edge and refined structure
  • Kaapzicht Estate Steytler Vision 2007 – despite the alcohol levels that one can pick up on this wine it always comes up as a favourite every time I get an opportunity to taste it
  • Val de Vie 1783 2007 – a Mouvedre dominated blend with dark fruit, coriander, cinnamon and clove spices filling the glass accompanied by soft, integrated tannins

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