Cape Blend Tasting - 3rd October '23
On the 3rd of October we tasted Cape Blends. This was a result of October being Pinotage month. Actually any reason to taste Pinotage is good enough. We decided to look into Cape blends, using the Veritas Committee of 2002 guidelines, where the proportion of Pinotage in the blend should be a minimum of 30% and a maximum of 70%. All wines were tasted in the same flight (together) and at the same temperature. The following was the tasting order, comments made by the tasters and the scores.
1. Beyerskloof Synergy Cape Blend Reserve 2020
Colour- inky dark red, with no gradation to a clear rim. Nose- plum, cassis, spice, black cherries and berries. Palate- crisp acidity, soft tannins, nutty, plums, cassis, black cherries, coffee, chocolate.
2. Kanonkop Kadette Cape Blend 2020
Colour- dark red, with almost no gradation to a red rim. Nose- banana, farm yard, black cherries, plum, wet earth, cedar. Palate- crisp acidity, firm tannins, black cherries and berries, cassis, plum, earthy, caramel.
3. Warwick Three Cape Ladies 2020
Colour- inky dark red, with no gradation to a clear rim. Nose- vanilla, honey, black cherries and berries. Palate- crisp acidity, firm tannins, vanilla, cedar, black and red fruits, oaky and spicy.
4. Alvis Drift Cape Fusion 2019
Colour- inky dark red, with no gradation to a clear rim. Nose- herbal, nutty, almonds, green herbs, coffee, toffee. Palate- crisp acidity, firm tannins, smoky, Rooibos tea, herbal, black cherries, Christmas cake, black berries.
5. Old Road Wines Butcher and Cleaver Cape Blend 2018
Colour- ink dark red, with no gradation to a red rim. Nose- shy, people struggled to get the nose, with banana, cassis, plum, black berry. Palate- crisp acidity, firm tannins, plum, cedar, black berries that linger to the finish.
Score- 15.20 (wasn’t liked, most felt it was a bit thin).
6. Simonsig Frans Malan 2018
Colour- ink dark red, with no gradation to a red rim. Nose- lead pencil, cedar, cassis, meaty, cinnamon. Palate- crisp acidity, firm but soft tannins, cedar, cherry, black fruits, cassis.
Score- 16.67 (some people didn’t score, they felt there was an issue with the wine?).
Interesting tasting, some people felt the Frans Malan was corked, while others raved about it. Still it came out tops tied with the Kanonkop? Third was the Warwick only 0.12 down on the top two. There were lots of comments from the tasters who were present. The scores I thought were a bit low, but generally the wines were all good. Taster felt that they were a bit harsh, but the wines were difficult to score cause they were very similar.