Regarded as one of the best and most rigorous tasters to cover South African wines, Neal Martin has just released his latest SA report. It comes as no surprise to…

Regarded as one of the best and most rigorous tasters to cover South African wines, Neal Martin has just released his latest SA report. It comes as no surprise to us that Neal rated Reyneke’s 2017 Cornerstone as the joint highest-rated red in SA.

Reyneke did particularly well with 3 wines rated 95 and above, only trumped by Sadie Family with 5 wines. Other notable performers include Keermont and Alheit Vineyards. Reyneke’s dedication to organic and biodynamic farming has seen to meteoric rise in the quality of their wines. Not to mention their stellar team with Johan Reyneke in the vineyards with Rosa Kruger, and the talented Nuschka De Vos in the cellar with guidance from Rudiger Gretschel.

‘Their wines demonstrate the care they take…. honest and personality-driven wines that are distinctive, as much cerebral as sensory experiences.’ – Neal Martin

The 2017 Cornerstone, from an excellent vintage, is a blend of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Modern in style, it offers a great depth of tannins and excellent ageing potential. Additionally, proceeds are used to help farmworkers with education, housing and retirement annuities.

Sweet wines dominate the highest ratings in Neal Martin’s latest report, followed by Chenin Blanc and Syrah. These include the 2019 Keermont Fleurfontein, Alheit Vineyards Lost & Found and Sadie Family Mev. Kirsten. These results confirm that Chenin Blanc and Syrah are at the forefront of SA’s fine wine offering.

Tasting notes:

Reyneke, Cornerstone 2017
The 2017 Cornerstone, matured in 30% new French oak for 18 months (the Merlot and Cabernet Franc aged in foudre) has an opulent bouquet of lavish dark cherry, cassis, blueberry and whole bunches of freshly picked violets. It would be overwhelming if not for its entrancing purity and pixelation. The palate is medium-bodied with a finely chiseled lattice of tannins, perfectly pitched acidity and wonderful mineralité toward the finish. This is an outstanding wine from Johan Reyneke and his team. Drink 2023-2040. – Neal Martin, Vinous, 96/100 (April 2021)

 

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