© Copyright 1998 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.
But that's changing in recent years, with a growing tide of South African imports showing up on retail shelves around the world. Some of the early arrivals haven't been memorable, frankly; as South Africa's s wine industry began re-emerging in the world market, it almost seemed as if the first efforts sought to compete in the same low-end niche with many of the cheap wines coming out of the former Communist bloc in Eastern Europe.
But better products are showing up now, including the following wines we've enjoyed over the past few days. The Sauvignon Blancs seem to share the fruity, grassy character of their counterparts from New Zealand and Australia (what is it about Southern Hemisphere Sauvignon Blanc?); the Cabernet is distinctly Bordeaux-like in style, more European than New World in character; and the Pinotage, a Pinot Noir X Cinsaut cross that's rarely found outside South Africa, is, well, typical Pinotage.
Boschendal 1997 Paarl (South Africa) "Grande Cuvée" Sauvignon Blanc ($9.99)
FOOD MATCH: Made a particularly good "like-with-like" marriage with cooked green peppers stuffed with pork and rice.
Saxenburg 1997 Stellenbosch (South Africa) Sauvignon Blanc ($7.99)
FOOD MATCH: Fine with grilled salmon.
Neil Ellis 1995 Stellenbosch (South Africa) Cabernet Sauvignon ($14.99)
FOOD MATCH: A natural match with T-bones from the grill.
Clos Malverne 1996 Stellenbosch (South Africa) Pinotage ($10.99)
FOOD MATCH: OK with roast chicken, but really comes into its own (earth with earth) with a side dish of braised red cabbage and onions.
E-mail me your tasting notes,
and I'll consider adding them to this page.
Back to Current Tasting Notes Index
Talk about wine | Ask wine question | Wine Lovers' Page