South Africa White Single Varietal over £10
KLEINE ZALZE FAMILY RESERVE SAUVIGNON BLANC 2010
South Africa is oft said to produce stylish Sauvignon Blancs which are mid-way in style between New Zealand and the Loire. At Kleine Zalze, they prefer to speak of “discernibly South African wines” that are well suited to food “with classical structure and complexity matched by a vibrant flavour intensity.”
And this Stellenbosch-based producer puts its money where its mouth is, for you can enjoy Kleine Zalze’s extensive range of wines at its award winning restaurant, Terroir. Currently on the menu is Prawn Risotto with a lemongrass and lime bisque, which chef Michael Broughton says “marries extremely well with the Family Reserve Sauvignon Blanc – the two together have been our single best seller for quite some time.”
The quest to achieve the perfect balance between structure and fruit intensity involves sourcing grapes from no less than five sites, all within 10 kilometres of the ocean for overall freshness. Following 24 hours’ skin contact to enhance aroma and flavour, only the free run juice is vinified, each site separately.
According to Joubert, the West Coast and Darling give greener characteristics, Stellenbosch and Durbanville bring riper, tropical notes, while Walker Bay gives a combination of minerality and tropical fruit.
For mouthfeel, complexity and structure, around 5% of the wine was barrel fermented and the whole fermented for as long as possible and lees-aged for 10 months. The different components were then blended and, after a further month’s integration, Joubert says of this flagship Trophy Winner, “we only bottle the top 6% of our total volume produced.”