Metis: A Frankenstein’s monster alive with verve
This South African white is an inspirational crossbreed, says Matthew Jukes.
How about this wonderful collaborative wine to usher in the new year? Metis is made by Matt Day, Klein Constantia's hugely talented young winemaker. It is directly inspired by Loire-based sauvignon blanc icon, Pascal Jolivet.
Matt spent the 2012 harvest working with Pascal and his winemaker Jean-Luc Soty. He found that many of the techniques used in making Jolivet's Sancerres and Pouilly-Fums were in opposition to those used in his own vineyard and winery. Cue a meeting of minds, swapping of secrets and a plan to make a fusion-style wine from Matt's top grapes.
The label depicts a South African protea fused to a French iris. So is this an unnerving Frankenstein or an inspirational Metis literally a crossbreed? The answer is that this wine has made this page where no other Klein Constantia sauvignon or any Jolivet wine for that matter has featured before.
Matt has taken the finest elements of Jolivet's craft and infused them into his own elemental raw materials the tension, aromatics and texture are remarkable. This isclearly the future for sauvignon from this historic estate. It ought to be a siren call to all Cape winemakers, too.
Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year (matthewjukes.com).