Simply put, the 2017 Rocking Horse Cape White Blend is John’s best wine to date. Sourced from various vineyards, it is made with the express purpose of showcasing what the Western Cape’s best vineyards have to offer. This local benchmark white opens with a complex nose of yellow stone fruit, florals and just a hint of spice which leads to a multi-layered palate with persistent, fruit-coated acidity on the finish. This is a powerful wine that offers great value at this level – a 96-pointer for just R250.
Juxtaposed is the delicious 2017 Wanderer’s Heart Cape Red Blend. This seamless red blend, from mostly Grenache and Cinsaut, is so moreish that you will find it impossible to keep its cork in. Don’t let its elegant nature fool you, however. It’s a stylish wine with fine-grained tannins and perfectly-poised balance.
2017 also sees the release of 4 single-vineyard wines – a Clairette Blanche called Man in the Moon from the Polkadraai Hills, Stellenbosch and a Chenin Blanc called Cat’s Cradlefrom the Paardeberg, Swartland. Returning this year, we have the impressive skin-contact Tin Soldier Sémillon Gris and the extremely rare Paper Kite old-vine Sémillon.
As ever, the single vineyards are produced in limited quantities. If you would like an allocation of any of these wines, please send your request to James@winecellar.co.za.
Please note, these wines will only be released next week and shipped from the 23rd of July.
Thorne & Daughters, Rocking Horse Cape White Blend 2017 – R 250
23% Roussanne, 22% Chenin Blanc, 21% Sémillon, 17% Clairette Blanche and 17% Chardonnay sourced from across the Western Cape. The nose shows white and yellow fruit, dried herbs, spice and a little earthiness. The palate has a little extra padding than Secommbe’s other 2017s (alcohol is 13.5%) but this is very much in its favour – it’s flavour-packed and quite luscious without being ingratiating. The overall impression is one of rich but very well balanced wine – powerful, precise and persistent. – Christian Eedes, Winemag.co.za, 96/100
Thorne & Daughters, Wanderer’s Heart Cape Red Blend 2017 – R 250
Made almost entirely from the two varieties I mentioned as particular favourites of the ultra-light brigade: Grenache and Cinsaut. There’s also 8% Mourvèdre in the 2017 Wanderer’s Heart – It adds some darker breadth and depth and contributes to the sheer deliciousness of the wine, and something (or everything) is giving a very fine, powder-tannin grip. – Tim James, Grape.co.za
Minimum of intervention is used to show off the character of these vineyards to best effect. Aromas of dried cranberry, star anise, coriander seed, talc, and exotic woods. The wine is poised on the palate with soft, chalky tannins, which give way to a finish of naartjie peel, cloves and damson plums. 59% Grenache Noir, 33% Cinsaut and 8% Mourvèdre. 13% alc. vol. – John Seccombe, Winemaker