Five centuries ago, the ancient mariners braved uncharted seas to round the Cape of Good Hope in search of exotic spices. Their nerve and dash continue to inspire the Spice Route philosophy. Charl du Plessis and his team have found their signature wine style in the rolling hills along the Cape’s West Coast, where unirrigated vines produce grapes with small, thick-skinned berries – ripe fruit that is dense, rich and full flavoured. A passionate dedication to exceptional quality and traditional handcrafting captures the essence of this fruit in the wines of the Spice Route.
IN THE VINEYARD
The hand-selected fruit was harvested from dryland vineyards in the Swartland. The Shiraz is from a vineyard planted on oakleaf and koffieklip soil in 1995. The Mourvèdre and Petite Sirah were planted in 2001, mainly on oakleaf soil. The Grenache planted in 2006 on well drained decomposed granite soils.
Mid-Feb to Late March 2013
Spice Route Malabar 2013 is a blend of scrupulously sorted vineyards, vinified and matured individually in Spice Route Winery’s dedicated Malabar cellar at Klein Amoskuil. The fruit was hand-harvested early in the morning into small lug boxes. After a bunch selection, the individual berries were hand-sorted over a sorting table and fermented in open oak fermenters (foudres), punching down the skins manually to give more structure to the final wine. After fermentation, the individual components were transferred to French oak barrels for 12 months. Only the best of these barrels was selected, then blended and returned to seasoned barrels for a further 10 months maturation. The wine was bottled without filtration and left to mature in the bottle for 2 years before release.
“With a decent 2012 winter rainfall of 440mm, we could carefully select each parcel of fruit to create a wine that truly reflects the excellence of the Swartland region. The wine has a well-integrated palate, opulent tannin structure and balanced mouth feel, giving it the potential to age another decade. Only 10 barrels were made though, so act quick. Cheers!” – Charl du Plessis
Layered and perfumed aromas of rich blackberry, plum, cacao and violets captivate the senses. Spice Route Malabar 2013 is best complimented with slow roasted lamb or even a charcuterie tapas selection.
60% Syrah | 20% Mourvèdre | 10% Petite Sirah | 10% Grenache