Robertson Reaches the Heights
Never judge a wine by its label. It’s not always the great names or very expensive wines that win International wards.
Robertson Winery is best known for mass-producing reliable, everyday wines at reasonable prices. Hardly the kind of wines to win awards. Robertson Winery is the country’s third largest wine producer, vinifying 2 million cases of wine a year, about half of which is for export.
The Robertson flagship wine, labeled No 1 Constitution Road, was recently awarded the Regional Trophy at the 2010 Decanter World Wine Awards in Britain.
The competition is run by the UK’s top wine magazine, Decanter, which is sold in 92 countries.
Robertson’s entry was judged the best in the category for Red Rhone varieties costing more than £10 a bottle.
This year’s competition attracted a record number of 11000 entries and less than 3% of these achieved gold medals or trophies.
The winning wine was made from selected barrels of Shiraz grown in the Robertson valley and matured in oak for more than two years.
Winemaker Jacques Roux says the award proves that Robertson is capable of producing world-class reds.
The winery’s marketing director Barry Kok, says the timing of the award could not have been better, following on the success of the 2010 World Cup soccer tournament which focused the eyes of the world on South Africa.
The wine takes its name from the address of the winery and was produced to celebrate South Africa’s young democratic constitution.
It is available in wine shops throughout the country at around R150 a bottle.
When you’re tired of freezing your buns off at home, consider heading out to he Breedekloof region near Rawsonville this weekend for their “Soetes and Soup” festival.
Participating wineries will provide roaring fires and offer fine fortified wines and home-made soups to warm the blood.
Local musicians like Chris Chameleon, Ivan Zimerman and Klopjag will provide live music at the venues, and there wil be soup-and-wine pairings, chocolate tastings and entertainment for children.
For those more energetic souls there’s a mountain trail to work up a good thirst.
There’s also a special deal whereby, if you book for two nights, you get a third night’s accommodation free.
For more information visit www.breedekloof.com or call 023 349 1791.
One of the Cape’s wine legends, Michael “Spatz” Sperling of Delheim, celebrated his 80th birthday this week.
Spatz came to South Africa as a 20-year-old war refugee from Germany in 1951 and proceeded to turn the farm Driesprong into one of South Africa’s best known wineries and tourist attractions. Together with Frans Malan of Simonsig and Sydney Back of Backsberg, Spatz worked to form the Cape Estate Wine Producers’ Association in the 1970s and was one of the founders and driving forces behind the establishment of the Stellenbosch Wine Route.
Under his guidance Delheim produced one of the Cape’s first serious Bordeaux style red blended wines, Delheim Grand reserve, still regarded as a benchmark of excellence.
Spatz, together with his then-winemaker Kevin Arnold (now co-owner and winemaker of Waterford Estate), initiated the formation in 1982 of the Cape Independent Winemakers’ Guild that markets its wines solely through an annual auction. This body of leading Cape winemakers, with membership by invitation only, is committed to pushing the boundaries of wine style and quality and serves as a platform for its members to share ideas and methods.
Photo: Courtesy of Breedekloof