Klein Genot has been operating as a boutique guesthouse for the past three years, notching up a prestigious Conde Nast award as one of the top 100 hotels worldwide. With foresight, they planted 20 of the 30 hectares with red wine varietals in 2001, employing the services of viticulturalist Paul Wallace.
Their decision to employ the services of winemaker Mark Carmichael-Green was as a result of hearing him lecture about wine and enjoying his highly knowledgeable yet hands-on approach. Carmichael-Green has taken on the Diamond's brief of concentrating on quality not quantity and to this end only 26 000 bottles of wines were made for to 2005 vintage.
Carmichael-Green has worked at Boland cellar and Simonsig estate and spent ten years as the wine maker of Zonnebloem wines. He has made four highly drinkable wines: a Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and a Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. All the cultivars are grown on the estate.
The Merlot 2005 was predominantly tank fermented with a small percentage matured in new French oak barrels.
The Shiraz was made in the typical French Rhone style, with the focus on peppery, spicy and leathery flavours.
The Bordeaux blend is called the Black Swan Reserve and blends Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon to make a wine of that offers oaky flavours resulting from 100% barrel maturation for 12 months.
* Food24 sampled the Black Swan Reserve 2005 and found it very easy on the palate with the potential to get better with time. Cabernet Franc's dark chocolate flavours were very prominent and hopefully with time the Cabernet Sauvignon maturity will come to the fore. However priced at R100 a bottle it might just need to stay on the rack for a while longer to warrant the price tag.