Not all wine lovers think of South Africa as their first choice in wines but wine has been produced there since 1659! Most South African wines are produced around Cape Town and the international interest and investment in the industry has created a dynamic and delicious wine culture.

Founded in 1983, Graham Beck Wines and its Robertson estate represent the Beck family's dedication to excellence. At its helm is Graham and Rhona's son, Antony Beck, who remains deeply invested in the business and focused on maintaining the brand's global reputation for impeccable quality and constant innovation. Evident in the sparkling wine portfolio is Antony's deep love for fine wines, specifically Chardonnay and Pinot Noir the two foundation varietals of Graham Beck's prestigious Méthode Cap Classique production. A selection of Beck family-owned ultra-premium still wines, namely Angela Estate and Capensis, join the Cap Classiques as part of the Beck family wines repertoire. This range embodies the trailblazing family's ideals, sense of heritage, and commitment to producing wines synonymous with the utmost quality and authenticity.

PINOT NOIR ROSE 2015

A pioneering first for South Africa, whereby both varietals, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, were whole bunch pressed together – this award winning Cap Classique proves its pedigree time and again both in local  and international wine competitions. The Pinot Noir lends a berry-laden ripeness and subtle spiciness while the Chardonnay contributes creamy complexity. The delightful salmon-pink hue of the Vintage Rosé perfectly complements the sumptuous strawberry notes and rich creamy complexity   on the palate.

Hand-picked Pinot Noir growing in three special geographical areas in the winelands adding to the complexity of this blend. Pinot Noir from Elgin Durbanville and the Slanghoek Valley was whole-bunch pressed together with  the Chardonnay growing on limestone-rich soils on the Robertson estate. Only the highest quality, most pure juice is considered for this Cap Classique.  

A unique first for South Africa in that the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay were  pressed together in the same press. Fractional recovery from the whole bunches ensured that only the best quality juice went into fermentation. After fermentation, the wine was lightly fined and bottled for the secondary fermentation, after which the wine underwent five years of lees contact time before disgorging. 

This bubbly has a beautiful salmon pink hue with noticeable ripe blueberries and a subtle spiciness from the Pinot Noir with creamy complexity from the Chardonnay. An explosion of raspberry fruit and slight honeysuckle flavours  on the palate, with a persistent yet delicate mousse.

BLANC DE BLANCS 2016 

The Blanc de Blancs remains one of the winery's stalwart favorites, a darling  among the legion of bubbly fans and testimony to the outstanding  Méthode Cap Classique terroir characteristics of the Robertson estate. Only  the highest quality juice (tête de cuveé) was selected for fermentation. It is 100 % Chardonnay created in Robertson, South Africa.

The fruit for this wine was hand selected and hand harvested from their very  specific Chardonnay Clonal block on the Robertson Estate. The soils in which  these vineyards grow have a rich natural limestone content. These clones  have different flavour profiles contributing to the unique complexity and  minerality in the base wines. Yield was between 8-10 ton/ha.

The Chardonnay was hand selected and hand-picked at 19.0 to 20.0 Brix during  the third week of January. Grapes were picked into lug boxes and then transferred  to fruit bins for transport to the cellar, where the whole bunches were tipped into  the presses and underwent a gentle and slow pressing cycle to extract the juice  as softly as possible. 

Whole bunch pressing ensures fractional recovery. Only the cuvee juice  (premium quality juice) was selected for fermentation. Of the cuvee, 50%  was fermented in specific Piece Champenoise 205L barrels to ensure richness  and extra dimension of flavour and a creamy texture. Only 7% new barrels  are added each year to the balance of older barrels to ensure harmony of the  wood integration during fermentation. After fermentation, the wine was aged in  barrels for 3 months and then selectively blended with other parcels of the best  Chardonnay that were fermented in stainless steel. The final blended base wine  was then bottled for the second fermentation with yeast contact of at least 48  months before degorgement.

Bright lime green color with rich aromas of fresh lime and ripe apricot fruit on  the nose. An exciting fine mousse with an explosion of tangerines on the palate.  Great brioche and yeast complexity broaden the palate, leading to a long and  elegant finish. 

 

Cynthia Calvert
Author: Cynthia CalvertEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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A trained journalist with a masters degree from Lamar University, a masters from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, as well as extensive coursework toward a masters of science in psychology from the University of New Orleans, Calvert founded the Tribune Newspapers in 2007. Her experiences as an investigative, award winning reporter (She won Journalist of the Year from the Houston Press Club among many other awards for reporting and writing), professor and chair of the journalism department for Lone Star College-Kingwood and vice president of editorial for a large group of community weeklies provides her with a triple dose of bankable skills that cover every aspect of the journalism field. Solid reporting. Careful interviews. Respect and curiosity for people and places.

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