2014Waterkloof2014 Waterkloof, Cinsault “Seriously Cool” Stellenbosch, South Africa.
Waterkloof’s Cinsault is a fresh and vibrant example of this Rhone varietal that has found a welcoming home and interesting history in South Africa. While usually used as a small time player in red blends, Consult has in recent years become a star attraction on it’s own in the Stellenbosch region. Cinsault, originally knwn as Hermitage in South Africa, and famously crossed with Pinot Noir to create Pinotage, now you know why it is called “Pinotage”, has thicker skins and is better in hot climates, it has even been planted in North Africa, Lebanon and Israel, but might be historically from the Minerois region of France, though also found in Chateauneuf du Pape plus other Rhone and Languedoc areas. Waterkloof’s Cinsault comes from 40 year old bush vines grown on stony ground made up of granite, these vines are on a cooler slope near Helderbrg and this retains the fresh acidity, allows for small yields and more intense character to show through. Waterkloof is working mostly biodynamic and the Seriously Cool Cinsault is fermented with natural/native yeasts whole cluster, with a gentile basket pressing, which makes this wine spicy and floral with a pure varietal core of tangy red fruits. Aged in neutral large French cask and unfiltered you get lots of expression from the Cinsault with subtle very faint wood traces in the form of soft tannins and a light cedar note, the main focus here is red berry, cherry, plum and huckleberry fruits along with peppercorns, exotic spices, saline infused anise, rose oil, strawberry/rhubarb, dusty lavender and a hint of green herb. A nice balanced mix of sweet, sour, savory and perfume gives this Waterkloof a very interesting and entertaining medium weight palate, as well as lingering dry tartness and framboise, with lots of life and energy, drink this pretty little thing over the next couple of years and be sure to check out more South African Cinsault, there is a lot of exciting examples to explore!
($26 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive

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