This year has seen us celebrate some welcome new additions to our range of wines from Adi Badenhorst.
Adi is one of the most refreshingly open and vibrant people you will ever meet. He is the polar opposite of stuffy or pretentious and embodies the free spirited, convivial, work hard play hard mentality that might fool you into thinking he’s not serious. Au contraire. Wine runs through his blood.
Badenhorst are inspired by the great old wines of South Africa and the discarded varietals. They gather knowledge from the bottles that can be found in the forgotten corners of old cellars; created before ‘modern methods and fame came along and changed the purity of the wines.’
Small parcels of selected fruit is sourced from various vineyards on their farm Kalmoesfontein, the Swartland area and the greater Paardeberg mountain. Grapes: Chenin Blanc 35%, Roussanne 9%, Marsanne 8%, Grenache Blanc 10%, Viognier 9% ,Verdehlo 8%, Chardonnay 2% , Grenache Gris 7%, Clairette Blanche 7% and Palomino 5% ( though some may not appear on the backlabels )
The final makeup of the blend varies slightly each year. This will always be the case as they discover new amazing parcels of fruit or refine the final blend. Badenhorst feel that Chenin Blanc is best suited to be the heart of the blend and that is why it forms the biggest portion of the blend. The aromas are very complex and change considerably in the glass. Perfume, spice, tea, stone fruit and citrus blossoms are some of the notes that can be detected. In the mouth the texture and ripeness and gentle tannins result in a wine that has incredible length and complex flavour profile. The wine also has wonderful fruit volume characterised by stone fruit and mineral flavours. The finish is long and has slight phenolic edges supporting the fruit through the entire length of the wine.
Shiraz 66%, Mourvedre 16%, Grenache 14%, Hermitake 4% are sourced from various vineyards on the farm in Kalmoesfontein in the Swartland area and the greater Paardeberg Mountain. Grapes are sorted meticulously in the vineyard and transported in small picking boxes to a refrigerated container where they are left overnight to cool down. The following day the grapes are transferred to fermentation vessels made of concrete or wood. No grapes are crushed or destemmed and minimal sulphur is added at this stage. The grapes are then “foot stomped” to extract juice to assist the onset of natural fermentation.
“The 2014 Ramnasgras Cinsault comes from a vineyard planted in 1956 and it’s a superb take on the variety by winemaker Adi Badenhorst. It has an almost Pinot Noir-like purity on the nose with wonderful definition and lift – Morello cherry, shortcake, a touch of orange zest and cola. The palate is very well balanced with harmonious, refined red berry fruit. The acidity keeps this tensile from start to finish and whilst the variety means that it just lacks the substance and weight on the finish that you might yearn, it remains a bottle that you will finish to the final drop.” 92 Points (Neal Martin, eRobertParker.com, Nov 2015).
“…Not for civilians. One for your wine-bore friends, who will love it and also love going on about it..” (Victoria Moore, The Telegraph – Food & Drink, Jan 2016)
This incredibly scarce red/pink grape variety originated in the northern parts of Italy and could also be found on the island of Corsica. How it ended up in South Africa is in itself a good question! Adi discovered this vineyard where it was grown for decades under the false (or deliberate) classification as Cinsault. It was however clearly not and has bunches and berries even larger than that of Cinsault. The older farm workers spoke of the “Barbarossa” and after investigation, the possibility thereof was quite intriguing. Barbarossa was first described in South Africa in A.I. Perold’s “A Treatise to Viticulture” which was written in 1927 and it was first recorded as early as 1884.
The 2014 Brakkuil Barbarossa is their 1st release of this appellation wine. The wine’s character is by all means unique. Quite elegant aromatics, comparable to Cinsault or Grenache, but with fruit and savoury flavours and remarkable colour and density on the mid-palate. This wine is made in tiny amounts and is truly a unique experience for South African winelover’s and Oenophile’s alike!
“Mid ruby red. Sweet very fruity nose. Sweet palate entry. Massively interesting – rich red fruits with fine tannins and Italian tang. Great fun.” 16.5 Points. (Jancis Robinson, Purple Pages, Sept 2015)
Of course, we mustn’t forget Adi Badenhort’s Secateurs range.
Secateurs Red is perfect for all you Cotes-du-Rhône fans out there. A similar blend, with so much concentration and length, at a great price point. Sings of those sunnier climates with ripe red fruit flavours, a smooth texture and plenty of spice! The Secateurs White (Chenin Blanc) is big. So maybe not one for the die-hard Sauvignon Blanc fans – but perfect for those of you that like your white wine to have a bit more body. Orange peel, honeysuckle, clean acidity, perfect food wine. The Secateurs Rosé is a blend of 50% Cinsault, 48% Shiraz, and a pinch of Grenache and Carignan. A fruity little number that will be flying off the shelves this ummer. Tempting aromas of mixed red fruits, some spice and rose, a generous palate and a long textured finish. A superb tipple for sunnier days!
A selection of wines from our Badenhorst range will be open for tasting in the shop on Saturday the 14th of May.