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Success for South Africa

In a standout year for South Africa at the Decanter World Wine Awards, the results reflect top quality and diversity of style from the nation’s producers

Following a particularly challenging year for South Africa’s wine producers between domestic ongoing alcohol bans and export issues, recent results from the Decanter World Wine Awards are reason to celebrate, with almost 50 top medals awarded.

Results have never been stronger and the quality has never been higher for South African wines at the international competition, with one Best in Show, nine Platinum and 39 Gold medals awarded this year. In comparison, this is more than double the number of Platinum medals awarded in 2020 and an increase of 25% on Golds.

‘The standard was really high,’ commented DWWA judge Jeremy Lithgow MW on the South Africa panel, and the results show, with both quality and diversity on offer.

Discover South Africa’s top-scoring sparkling and white wines from DWWA 2021 below, with full results available to view here.

DWWA 2021: Top-scoring sparkling & white wines from South Africa

Sparkling

Quoin Rock, Black Series Brut, Western Cape 2014

Quoin Rock, Black Series Brut, Western Cape 2014Platinum, 97 points
POA Frontier Fine Wines
Still amazingly fresh and youthful with classy minerality and finesse. Rich and savoury aromatics with red fruit notes of raspberry alongside honeysuckle and pear. A buttery, brioche and honey-led palate framed by bright, glassy acids. Alcohol 12%

Boschendal, Jean Le Long Prestige Cuvée, Western Cape 2009

Boschendal, Jean Le Long Prestige Cuvée, Western Cape 2009Gold, 96 points
N/A UK boschendalwines.com
Rich and nutty with creamy honeyed nectarine, brioche and icing sugar notes. The mousse is explosive, showing an intense lemon and lime concentration. Fabulous freshness and focus. Alc 13%

Babylonstoren, Sprankel Brut, Simonsberg-Paarl, Paarl 2015

Babylonstoren, Sprankel Brut, Simonsberg-Paarl, Paarl 2015Gold, 95 points
£31.99-£33.60 Novel Wines, Rakq, The Newt in Somerset
A complex and savoury nose with pineapple, oatmeal, sourdough and buttered toast. A very even, fine, persistent mousse, with fresh lemony acids. Long and intense. Alc 12.3%

Laborie, Blanc de Blancs, Western Cape 2015

Laborie, Blanc de Blancs, Western Cape 2015Gold, 95 points
£13.95-£17.99 Aitken’s, Carruthers & Kent, Magnum Wine, Slurp, The Whalley Wine Shop
Complex aromas of ripe apple and nectarine, with savoury hints of Marmite and grilled nuts. A lemon peel palate with a big mousse of tiny bubbles. Alc 12%

Sauvignon Blanc

KWV, Cathedral Cellar, Western Cape 2019

KWV, Cathedral Cellar, Western Cape 2019Platinum, 97 points
£13.99 North South Wines
Big, pungent passion fruit and mandarin nose with grassy notes. Multi-layered with a bitter lemon intensity and enticing notes of oranges, lime peel, lemongrass and fig. A really sophisticated offering. Alc 14%

Cederberg, Ghost Corner, Elim, Cape Agulhas 2020

Cederberg, Ghost Corner, Elim, Cape Agulhas 2020Gold, 95 points
£22.25 Drink Finder
Fresh aromatics with green apple pastille and white peach. Rich, with tangy acids and concentrated flavours of lemon sherbet, herbs and a mineral, green melon finish. Alc 13.5%

Diemersdal, The Journal, Durbanville, Cape Town 2020

Diemersdal, The Journal, Durbanville, Cape Town 2020Gold, 95 points
N/A UK diemersdal.co.za
Classically styled Sauvignon Blanc, showing a melange of green fruits, minerality and delicately grassy notes. Full palate, well oaked, with lemon curd and fynbos herbal richness. Alc 14%

Tokara, Director’s Reserve, Stellenbosch 2018

Tokara, Director’s Reserve, Stellenbosch 2018Gold, 95 points
N/A UK tokara.com
A serious barrel-fermented Sauvignon. Waxy lemon aromas with toasted sesame seed. Has a fresh, mineral palate with concentrated apricot and lemon fruits, and a focused finish. Impressive. Alc 13.5%

Chardonnay

De Wetshof, Bateleur, Robertson 2018

De Wetshof, Bateleur, Robertson 2018Gold, 96 points
£30.95-£33.99
Ellis Wines, Exel, South Africa House of Wine
Fine and alluring with limestone and wet slate, lemon cream, lime peel and a vanilla pod kiss. A long, distinguished finish with nutty oatmeal flavours. Alc 13%

Paul Cluver, Seven Flags, Elgin 2018

Paul Cluver, Seven Flags, Elgin 2018Gold, 96 points
£51.50-£55.95 Christopher Piper, Cru, Frontier Fine Wines, Planet of the Grapes, The Drink Shop, Wine Direct
Apples, cream, nuts, orange peel and spicy oak all over the nose, with a dry, long, super-moreish palate. Excellent. Alc 13%

Rustenberg, Five Soldiers Simonsberg- Stellenbosch, Stellenbosch 2019

Rustenberg, Five Soldiers Simonsberg- Stellenbosch, Stellenbosch 2019Gold, 96 points
£29.50-£31.95 Available via UK agent Seckford
Rich, round and fleshy. Ripe and exotic with apple crumble and mandarins through to oak and spun sugar. A very smart, wellhoned creation. Alc 13.5%

De Wetshof, Lesca, Robertson 2020

De Wetshof, Lesca, Robertson 2020Gold, 95 points
£14.95-£17.40 Brands from Africa, Ellis Wines, Exel, Hedley Wright
Attractive green apple and melon aromas. Stone fruits, macadamia, hints of oatmeal biscuit on the palate. Tangy and fresh with lovely texture. Alc 13.5%

Peter Falke, PF, Stellenbosch 2020

Peter Falke, PF, Stellenbosch 2020Gold, 95 points
N/A UK peterfalkewines.com
Rich and layered white toast, honey and peach pastille aromas. Big, ripe palate with complex oak spice, lemon peel, red apple and buttered toast flavours. Alc 14%

Piekenierskloof Wine Co, Piekenierskloof, Citrusdal Mountain 2020

Piekenierskloof Wine Co, Piekenierskloof, Citrusdal Mountain 2020Gold, 95 points
N/A UK piekenierskloofwines.co.za
Taut and mineral nose. Complex palate, green apples and custard creams, lemon curd with a wet-slate minerality. Alc 13.5%

Chenin Blanc

Bellingham, The Bernard Series Old Vine, Coastal Region 2019Bellingham, The Bernard Series Old Vine, Coastal Region 2019

Platinum, 97 points
£13.99-£18.20 Evington’s, The General Wine Co, Turton Wines
Big, inviting nose, spicy oak, honeysuckle, tarte tatin, river stones. A lovely creamy texture and long, tangy finish. Alc 13.5%

KWV, The Mentors, Coastal Region 2019

KWV, The Mentors, Coastal Region 2019Gold, 96 points
£14.95-£17.99 Cape Wine & Food, Carruthers & Kent, Dulwich Vintners, Reserve Wines, The Whalley Wine Shop
Complex apple-and-pear nose. Deceptively rich palate, almost toffeed lemon-curd sweetness. Intense and long. Alc 14%

L’Avenir, Single Block, Stellenbosch 2019

L’Avenir, Single Block, Stellenbosch 2019Gold, 96 points
N/A UK lavenirestate.co.za
A delicate buttercup nose flows into a flinty mineral, peach and stone fruit palate, notes of wet granite. Has layers of hidden delight and brimming with freshness. Alc 14.4%

Grenache Blanc

KWV, The Mentors, Coastal Region 2018

KWV, The Mentors, Coastal Region 2018Gold, 96 points
£16.95 Carruthers & Kent, Lanchester Wines, Perold Wine Cellar
A blockbuster with rich, textured layers of pear purée, tart quince, green plums and an impressively cool, polished finish. Lovely precision: complex and exciting. Alc 13.5%


Search all award-winning wines from South Africa


DWWA 2021 results will be published alongside the October 2021 issue, on sale 1 September 2021. Subscribe to Decanter Magazine here

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