Wine of the week: two simply perfect pinotages

This the most attractive pinotage I have ever tasted: clean, fresh and structured and with more layers than a millefeuille.  

2018 Beeslaar, Pinotage, Stellenbosch, South Africa 

£38, The Wine Society, 01438-741177, thewinesociety.com

Abrie Beeslaar made this magnificent wine from 25-year-old bush vines, and it was fermented in concrete tanks with regular punch-downs to gain as much extraction from the powerful pinotage skins as possible. It was then aged for 21 months in 40% new French oak barriques. There is nothing particularly unusual about this recipe, so why is this the most attractive pinotage I have ever tasted?  It is extraordinarily expressive with silky black fruit and a hugely decadent mid-palate that runs on for minutes and then segues into a stunning, savoury, spicy, earthy finish. There is no pelt, burning rubber or pox of any kind – it is clean, fresh and structured and has more layers than a millefeuille.  

All too often, South Africa’s most important local grape has a certain sort of funkiness which turns me off completely. Beeslaar has nothing but pristine, gloriously appointed, velvety fruit – it is shaped like a super Tuscan, built like a Cape(d) crusader and I know everyone who feels like me about this tricky grape will go nuts about this wine. Well done, Abrie – you are a veritable magician. 

If you would like to dip your toe into the pinotage grape at a lower price point, may I direct you to the  2020 Radford Dale, Vinum Pinotage (£11.50, The Wine Society) – another squeaky-clean red with exquisite, deep, dark fruit and lashings of cocoa. Jo Locke MW, The Wine Society’s South African buyer, has done the impossible and found not one but two perfect pinotages this year!This the most attractive pinotage I have ever tasted, – clean, fresh and structured and with more layers than a millefeuille.

Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (matthewjukes.com)

Recommended

Coronavirus has had less of an impact on UK property than you might think
Property

Coronavirus has had less of an impact on UK property than you might think

The UK property market looked to have been turned upside-down as people abandoned city flats to work from more spacious homes in the country, while of…
29 Nov 2021
Index-linked bonds could prove a costly inflation hedge
Government bonds

Index-linked bonds could prove a costly inflation hedge

Index-linked bonds are designed to keep pace with inflation, but at these prices you are locking in a loss
29 Nov 2021
Three safe bets on the growing online gambling sector
Share tips

Three safe bets on the growing online gambling sector

Professional investor Aaron Fischer, creator of the Fischer Sports Betting and iGaming ETF, picks three of his favourite online gambling stocks.
29 Nov 2021
Why Britain’s supermarket chains should take over Europe
Retail stocks

Why Britain’s supermarket chains should take over Europe

Britain’s supermarkets should not sit back and wait for a takeover bid, says Matthew Lynn. They should launch their own for the continent’s chains.
28 Nov 2021

Most Popular

Don’t worry about the global population explosion – it’s unlikely to happen
Investment strategy

Don’t worry about the global population explosion – it’s unlikely to happen

One of the many things we are taught to worry about is the fast-rising global population. But in fact, says Merryn Somerset Webb, the opposite is tru…
15 Nov 2021
Four of the best new investment trust listings
Investment trusts

Four of the best new investment trust listings

Diversify your portfolio and benefit from rising dividends with these four new investment trusts coming to the market soon.
15 Nov 2021
Is it time to remortgage your home?
Mortgages

Is it time to remortgage your home?

Banks are already starting to prepare for higher interest rates, says Alex Rankine. Should you, too?
23 Nov 2021