Friday, May 13, 2005

Wine: Southern Right Pinotage

Holidays are enticing only for the first week or so. After that, it is no longer such a novelty to rise late and have little to do. ~Margaret Laurence

After a few weeks of vacation, Swirl & Sniff is back from California with some good news to report: the vineyards are still there, the vines are blooming, and even Texas can now ship wine like a first-world state.

While in California, one of the things I was turned onto is North American plantings of Pinotage. Vino Con Brio, a winery in Lodi, California, has the largest planting of the varietal on the continent with fewer than ten acres. As Pinotage starts to climb its way out of obscurity here in the States, it seems appropriate to discuss a wine made in Pinotage's home land: South Africa.

Southern Right's 2002 Western Cape Pinotage is a subtly tannic, well-balanced red wine with a full, rounded texture. Even with the slightly pronounced aforementioned tannins, the wine's texture is pleasingly smooth. The bouquet highlights concentrated dark fruits with hints of ripe red fruit and a sliver of oaky spice. These grapes are grown in clay-rich soil, which the winery claims helps to soften the potentially harsh tannins that can be found in some Pinotages. At $15/bottle, the Southern Right's Pinotage is a fine deal.

Value: 3.0
Color & Clarity: 3.0
Bouquet: 3.5
Flavor: 3.5


Blogger Bradley Cooper, Winemaker said...

Well that's a bit of a coincidence!
I just reviewed a pinotage on or about the same date. Check it out

10:43 PM  

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