By now, Sadie Family Wines needs no introduction. Eben Sadie is generally regarded as SA’s best winemaker. Their wines, which are some of our country’s most characterful examples, have revolutionised the South African landscape and inspired a whole generation of winemakers.
The Signature wines are the very best that Eben aims to make. Since the maiden 2000 vintage, the Sadie Family Columella has constantly changed to better express the Swartland. It has since become a modern icon and is one of SA’s most sought-after and collected wines. The standout characteristic of the 2016 Columella is its sense of balance and the certainty that it will last for 20 years and beyond.
The Sadie Family Palladius 2016, the sister wine to Columella, has probably changed the most since its release. It started off with Chenin Blanc and Viognier as the main components but now boasts more than 11 varieties from 17 different vineyards. This is South African winemaking at its best – a super-complex wine with many pieces to its puzzle that requires cerebral engagement. This is one of SA’s finest whites.
The 2016 Columella has less Syrah than previous vintages and will need a good amount of time in bottle to show its true potential. It is a classic release – a touch darker than the 2015 but showing the continuously refined elegance of recent releases. The 2016 Palladius follows the same simple frame of the last few vintages. Now completely unwooded, it captures the essence of the Swartland with its blend of Chenin Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Sémillon, Sémillon Gris, Viognier, Clairette Blanche, Roussanne, Verdelho, Colombard and Palomino.
Sadie Family, Columella 2016 – R 865
The 2016 Columella has less Syrah than previous vintages and will need a good amount of time in bottle to show its true potential. It is a classic release – a touch darker than the 2015 but showing the continuously refined elegance of recent releases. There is 48% Syrah in the 2016 – the lowest level yet with the idea, going forward, that it will play less of a starring role and allow for a more complex blend. The 2016 is a shade darker than the elegant 2015 – wonderfully fresh and pure when we tasted it in June. The nose is broad with gentle hints of darker fruit, hints of oak follows to a rich layered palate. The wine is both dark and brooding yet still fresh. This is classic Columella and requires at least 5 – 8 years for maturation before drinking. – James Pietersen
Sadie Family, Palladius 2016 – R 755
A blend of Chenin Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Sémillon, Sémillon Gris, Viognier, Clairette Blanche, Roussanne, Verdelho, Colombard and Palomino! This is the first Palladius that comes in under 13,5% alc. Brooding stone fruit, spice and a sense of quiet concentration is promised on the nose. The palate is focused, super-complex and clearly still very young. This is a finely-tuned expression of Swartland fruit where the sunnier varieties like Viognier, Marsanne, etc. are reined in whilst the more reductive varieties like the Palomino, Clairette, etc. are given a bit more breathing space leading to super complex wine with many pieces to a puzzle that require cerebral engagement. One of SA’s finest whites. – James Pietersen