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Advent Calendar #9 is the Fleur du Cap Essence du Cap Pinot Noir 2016


12 December 2017  -  Michael Olivier

My choice for the Advent Calendar #9 is the Fleur du Cap Essence du Cap Pinot Noir 2016. Fleur du Cap is one of the most well-known corporate brands in the winelands. It is a well-known property in Somerset West yet it has no wine grape vineyards. It started off as a root stock nursery.

The grapes for this sublime wine were selected from three different areas, two from cool climate vineyards in Elgin and Ceres, and one situated in Stellenbosch. The high lying 6 to 7-year-old Ceres vineyards yield 8 tons per hectare. The 2009 planted Stellenbosch vineyard yields 10 tons per hectare. The soils are decomposed shale with good water holding capacity.


The grapes for the three components of this wine were handpicked and separately vinified. After fermentation, the wines were then aged on a combination of French and American oak staves. The three building blocks were then blended together, clarified and bottled.

Pour
From a Burgundy shaped bottle under natural cork. Very elegant, and to me new, livery. Really attractive and would certainly make an easy choice on a wine shop shelf. In the glass, it is a charming delicate cherry garnet in colour which pales out slightly to the edges. As expected the nose is of red berries and red cherries. There is a lovely undertow of forest floor after rain. The palate is of berries, oak spice and medium bodied. The tail is so elegant with all the fruit, acidity, oak and cashmere tannins so perfectly interwoven and lasts long and wanes gently.

Pair
Chill it - do chill it. Just improves the flavour so much. This is a food wine - remember it is the wine of Coq au Vin and of Beef Bourguignon. However, I have always said, someone said it to me once, Pinot Noir is a red wine trying hard to be a white wine.  It will do really well with seared tuna or a tuna ceviche. A beef carpaccio would be a welcome partner. Your Christmas Gammon will love this wine.

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