Ernie Els Red Bordeaux Blend Stellenbosch 2001
Bordeaux is a symbol for great wine, a model for the whole world of wine. The five red wine varieties in the area are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc. Very few wines in Bordeaux have all five cultivars in the same wine as the terroir differs considerably in the area. Thus we saw this as a challenge to make a wine, which has all five varieties to show the diversity of our terroir in South Africa and the ability of the different varieties to complement each other in a blend. We believe that the best wines in the world are blends. Teamwork always achieves better results if managed correctly than a single person trying to do it all on his own. This is the concept that we put together by using the traditional five Bordeaux cultivars to tailor make the blend according to the taste profiles that Ernie and the team at Engelbrecht Els can put together. Mediterranean with the rainfall ± 650mm per annum. The vineyards are located on north facing slopes. The conditions are slightly warmer than most of the other areas in the Stellenbosch region, ensuring fruit ripeness. The soils are deep red and are a mixture of weathered / decomposed granite or Hutton. A small percentage is clay and also Clovelly. The different clones of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot are kept separate (micro-vinified) throughout vinification. Vinified in 300 litre French oak barrels for 18 months, it underwent bottle maturation for a further 18 months in our underground cellar. This wine is made in a full robust style and has the potential to age in excess of twenty years. The wine has developed well over the last eight months since it has been bottled. Integration of the tannins of the different varieties has progressed to such an extent that, though still young, the wine is very accessible and ready for release into the market place. The potential of the Els blend should not be underestimated. The delicate balance between ageing and accessibility must be closely followed, as this wine is made to age over a long period of time. Colour: Crisp in texture and concentrated red. Bouquet: Aromatic, intense dark berry and currant flavours with herbs. This wine: Dense and earthy with green pepper, plum and good extraction of wild berry flavours. An elegant wine, the finish is long and complex with dried fruit flavours lingering. Good clean tannins, the wine will benefit from cellaring.
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