South Africa is producing some mighty fine shiraz now – I have some firm favourites myself – and this June, you have a chance to sample some of the very best. The annual Shiraz Showcase on 21 June at CTICC will feature more than 100 wines, including the winning 12 Shirazes plus the three Shiraz blends that all won prizes at the recent 4th Shiraz SA Challenge awards ceremony in Paarl
Here are some of the wines that entered the challenge:
The dream dozen:
Alto Shiraz 2013
Babylonstoren Shiraz 2014
Cederberg Shiraz 2014
De Morgenzon Reserve Syrah 2014
Eagles’ Nest Shiraz 2013
Fairview Eenzaamheid Shiraz 2013
KWV The Mentors Shiraz 2013
KWV Laborie Limited Collection Shiraz 2014
Rickety Bridge Shiraz 2013
Saronsberg Shiraz 2014
Strandveld Syrah 2012
Windmeul Shiraz Reserve 2013
In the division for Shiraz blends Alvi’s Drift, Eikendal and Middelvlei showed their mettle.
Those are champion wines, my friends!
According to Dr Andy Roediger, judging panel chairperson, the entries increasingly show purity of fruit and well managed tannin structures. “We encountered less green or stalky wines and less over-wooding was noticed, thus allowing the aromatics to be forthcoming and making the wines approachable,” he says.“South African Shiraz is definitely becoming the grape variety to take note of and these wines can comfortably compete with the best in the world.’
The announcement of the results of the 2016 Shiraz Challenge clearly indicates that a handful of cellars are staking their claim in the contest for the country’s foremost Shiraz by repeatedly winning top honours. Five particular producers are firmly taking the lead and show no sign of releasing their grip on this sought-after position.
KWV once again flexed their winemaking muscles. In 2014 they were awarded two medals in the category for Shiraz, while two of their Shiraz blends won trophies in 2015. This year they returned to the podium for two awards in the Shiraz category.
Needing no introduction when it comes to Shiraz, Fairview has won awards for the past three consecutive years: in 2014 the Fairview Beacon Shiraz featured in the top 12, and during the past two years their Fairview Eenzaamheid Shiraz won trophies.
Cederberg, Eagles’ Nest and Saronsberg each also palmed trophies during the past three years.
Chairman of Shiraz SA Edmund Terblanche’s opinion about the Shiraz blends category: ‘This category was only introduced in 2014 and although we feel that the growth has not reached its summit, it is exciting to see how winemakers are experimenting with cultivars other than the traditional Rhône varieties.’
This will also be the only time these wines feature together under one roof, unless you are lucky enough to obtain a case of the winning wines, marketed exclusively by Cyber Cellar. Contact Cyber Cellar to order online
‘Wine lovers and Shiraz fans are not alone in being excited about sampling the cream of the crop’ says Edmund Terblanche.’Every year we spot restaurateurs, sommeliers, fellow producers, the trade and students enthusiastically working their way through the winners, the finalists and the myriad brands presented at the show.’
Got that? Shiraz is the shizniz right now.
This will be the 8th annual Shiraz Showcase, held at the CTICC, with ample safe parking and accessibility. (Big lifts, too, to take your purchases down to the parking garage in.) Food stands will serve bites and tidbits to pair with Shiraz at the event. The Shiraz Showcase lasts from 6pm – 9pm, so pop in after work and then head out for dinner!
Tickets are R120 each and gets you entry, unlimited free tastings, a stylish tasting glass and the brochure listing the relevant wine information. Groups of 10 or more qualify for a discount.
Book and buy your tickets from Web Tickets from their website. Tickets can also be bought at Cape Town Tourism. A box office will also operate on the day at the entrance. Go to www.webtickets.co.za or call Web Tickets on 086 111 0005.