We’ve all been there, sometimes there is just too much month left at the end of your wine budget. Staring at the barren wine rack woefully, I’ve often wondered if I should open that ‘special’ bottle of wine, or take my chances with the supermarket bargain bottles. I asked 5 of South Africa’s sharpest wine minds where I should be putting my last R100:
Wine buyer and 2016 Veritas Young Wine Writer of the Year
Image by: Jenna-Leigh Storey
“This wine is poetic justice”, says Tshepang and by the way she talks about it, it sounds like heaven in a glass bottle. “With a wine-maker whose dexterous hand has found various expressions of Chenin Blanc, Stellenrust is exploring the potential and complexity of Chenin Blanc in wonderful ways. This particular wine exhibits lime and tropical fruit flavours. With a mineral quality, it reveals a complexity that is a pleasure to behold.”
Owner of Publik online wine store and wine bar
David leans in and whispers, as if he is sharing a secret. “One of the best example of how there’s incredible value in lesser known grape varieties. This wine has the flavour, structure and overall character of a wine twice the price, but because it’s made from Pinot Gris, which isn’t a fashionable or big-selling variety, it is available at an absolute steal.”
Ewan says with a smile, “Yup, I said 3 litres. Putting proper wine in a box…works out to under R100/bottle.” Sourced from Slanghoek, this Sauvignon Blanc integrates great aromatics and sophisticated textures to provide so much more than just your bog-standard box wine. “Guaranteed to satisfy both the casual and serious Sauvy fans out there” Ewan assures us.Sourced by The Wine Thief for Ben Wren Wines.
Sommelier and head of beverage programme for La Mouette and Upper Bloem restaurants
“It was very difficult to choose a wine under R100, as my palate likes a richer category”, Lara says laughing. She describes the Pinot Gris “Delicious! Yellow apple, pear and gooseberries with a tangerine like acidity. Slightly richer mouthfeel due to time on the lees and partial barrel ageing.”
Sommelier and head of beverage programme for La Colombe Restaurant
This is a blend of Chenin Blanc, Semillion, Viognier and Clairette Blanche in a refreshing entry level white wine. I always like Chenin Blanc driven blends because I am such a big fan of the grape. It shows more tropical fruits and some light floral notes from the Viognier. It goes down nice and refreshing with a steely acidity.