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Klein Karoo Wine Route Newsletter

October 2018

Dear Wine Friend

Each year, the young wines of the wine regions are judged to see what the quality of the harvest is and the results are always eagerly anticipated.  The Klein Karoo  Young Wine Show awards function was held at Barrydale on the 16th of August 2018.

For the sixth consecutive year in the Klein Karoo, Montagu Wine Cellar was appointed the Champion Producer Cellar with their remarkable achievement of delivering the Champion and Reserve Champion Chenin Blanc, the Champion and Reserve Champion Dry White Wine (a Chenin Blanc/Chardonnay blend), the Champion and Reserve Champion Natural Sweet Wine, the Champion Shiraz, Champion Ruby Cabernet and Reserve Champion Muscat Fortified Wine.

The Reserve Champion Producer Cellar is Calitzdorp Wine Cellar who produced the  Champion Dry Red Wine, a Tinta Barocca.

The Champion Private Cellar is De Krans Wine Cellar with the Champion Wine – the Champion Non-Muscat Fortified for Port, the Reserve Champion Non-Muscat Fortified and the Reserve Champion Red Wine.

Boplaas Family Vineyards, the Reserve Champion Private Cellar were awarded the Reserve Champion Wine for their Champion Muscat Fortified Wine.


Trophy winners at the Klein Karoo Young Wine Show 2018
Christiaan de Kocker (Montagu Wine Cellar); Robert Windvogel (Montagu Wine Cellar); Hermias Vollgraaff (Montagu Wine Cellar); Louis van der Riet (De Krans Wine Cellar); Danie van der Westhuizen (Calitzdorp Wine Cellar).
Klein Karoo Young Wine Show attendees.
Wines from Boplaas Family Vineyards received five golds at the SA Young Wine Show 2018 – two for Boplaas Vintage Ports, two for Boplaas Tawny Ports and one for their Muscadel. From left to right Daniel, Margaux and Carel Nel.
Winemaker Danie van der Westhuizen (Calitzdorp Wine Cellar) with the trophy awarded to the Class Winner SA Young Wine Show 2018 “Any other Single Red Cultivar”.

SA Champion Port Trophy For De Krans

De Krans Wine Cellar has reaffirmed its position as one of SA’s leading port producers, adding the title of 2018 SA Champion Port to its long list of prestigious accolades. This title was bestowed to the producer at the recent 2018 SA Young Wine Show, where the results were announced at a gala event attended by key industry role players. De Krans also won this trophy in 2012 and 2014.

The SA Young Wine Show dates back to 1833, when it was held for the first time by the Cape of Good Hope Agricultural Association (now Agri-Expo) in Rondebosch. An annual awards event, the competition gives winemakers the opportunity to showcase the best wines of the current vintage.

In addition to receiving the SA Champion Port Trophy, the producer was also awarded the title of Class Winner in the categories of Cape Tawny, Cape Vintage and Any Other Port, respectively. The passion and dedication that winemaker, Louis van der Riet and his team put in to produce South Africa’s leading ports paid off as their efforts were further acknowledged with four gold medals for port style wines at the same competition.

For more information on De Krans and its diverse range, please visit

Louis van der Riet receiving the SAWFA Trophy for the SA Champion Port.

Axe Hill scores over 90 points

Axe Hill is exited about recent tasting results. The Tim Atkin’s 2018 South Africa Special Report is in its 7th edition and is highly regarded for the span of wines reviewed. Atkin is also an influential commentator in a market that is one of the biggest for South African producers.  The scores were:

At 91 pointsAxe Hill Touriga Nacional 2015. Dark. Voluptuous aromas of sweet plum and cherry, violet and purple perfume. Mouth-filling palate carried on velvet tannins. Savoury and plush juicy fruit. A hint of oak. Silky, layered tannins carrying rich textured fruit. Long after taste.

At 92 pointsAxe Hill Distinta 2015. A blend of Touriga Nacional 40%, Tinta Barocca 40%, Souzão 20%. Dark red. Intense red berries. Pastille aromas. Juicy berry and cherry fruit evolving on the palate carried by earthy tannins. Older barrels!

And at 93 pointsAxe Hill Cape Vintage 2009. Deep garnet colour, black to the center. On the nose, compote of dark fruit, black cherries, warm spices, vanilla, mocha chocolate and nuts.

And while we are about it, a recent CAPPA debut for Axe Hill's neighbourhood blend from Lenies Hof.

CAPPA 2018 Top 10Lenies Hof 2016 Red Blend.  A Calitzdorp Blend from a young (practically organic) vineyard planted in 2011. Touriga Nacional and Tinta Roriz. Aged in old French and European oak – No filter used other than time! Ripe red berry/cherry aromas. Fine but firm tannins provide excellent grip. Savoury flavours surround sweet fruit. A balanced, young wine to fill out in the glass in a year or two – now the perfect braai/meat partner!

For more information, please contact the cellar at

Boplaas on Tim Atkin 2018 report


Wines from Boplaas Family Vineyards have again received top ratings by acclaimed UK Master of Wine Tim Atkin, including four achieving more than 90/100 in his latest South African Special Report. The highest scorer was the Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve 2006, at 95 points.

The Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve Port 2016 received 94 points, the Boplaas Gamka Branca 2017, a white blend that includes Portuguese variety Verdelho, 91 points and the Boplaas Touriga Nacional Family Reserve 2014, 90 points.

For more information, please visit

 Atkin rates De Krans amongst the finest

De Krans Wine Cellar in Calitzdorp is without a doubt one of SA’s leading port producers. This statement was reaffirmed when two De Krans port-style wines and one of their wines scored more than 90 points each in the much anticipated annual review of South African wines, by UK authority Tim Atkin MW, which was made public on 12 September at this year’s Cape Wine 2018.

Not only did the De Krans Cape Vintage Reserve 2016 receive an excellent rating of 96 points, but it was also named Overall Fortified Wine of the Year. In addition to this, the De Krans Cape Tawny Ltd Release and the Tritonia Red Calitzdorp Blend 2016 – its flagship red blend made from Portuguese varieties – each received an impressive score of 93 points.

Winemaker Louis van der Riet describes the Cape Vintage Reserve Port as a big wine full of ripe dark fruit notes of plum, mulberry and black currants. Well-rounded with smooth dark chocolate undertones and firm tannins are prominent in this port-style wine that would mature well over 30 years. Elegant with flavours of caramel, toffee, roasted nuts and fruitcake, is the perfect description for the Cape Tawny Ltd Release.

The Tritonia Red Calitzdorp Blend 2016 is a dry red blend of Touriga Naçional, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barocca and Tinta Amarela. Louis describes the wine as having a ruby red colour, with complex flavours of violets, cloves and red fruit on the nose. It has a savoury and fine-grained structure, with lovely integrated wood and a delightful elegance on the palate.

For more information, please visit

Boplaas achieves top prices


A Port-style wine by the renowned Boplaas Family Vineyards has put this fortified style back in the spotlight after it achieved its best price to date at the 44th Nederburg Auction.

The famous Calitzdorp producer had two of its wines feature on the auction list – the Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve 2004, which sold for R4800 per six-bottle case; and, the Boplaas Touriga Nacional Family Reserve  2012, which also achieved a top selling price of R2 400 per six-bottle case.

“This was excellent news for us,” says Boplaas Family Vineyards owner Carel Nel. “While we are generally well-known for our Port, these prices also reflect the appeal of our still wines made from Portuguese varieties among connoisseurs.  “Boplaas has invested substantially in consistent quality from vine to bottle and, as the success at the Nederburg Auction shows, this investment has paid off for both us and the buyer of Boplaas wine.”

For more information, the farm can be contacted at

Carel and Jeanne Nel

2018 Golden Wine Awards

It was an intense two days of sniffing, swirling and spitting for a team of wine lovers, to select the best value wines in South Africa. The Gold Wine Awards is a consumer-judged competition that endeavours to put a seal of excellence on wines delivering quality at a reasonable price, thereby guiding the wine buying public. 

Boplaas Family Vineyards received gold for the Boplaas Tinta Barocca 2016 and the Boplaas Woolworths Tinta Barocca 2017. For more information, please contact the cellar at

Calitzdorp Cellar won gold medals for all six wines they entered into the competition, namely their Calitzdorp Cape Vintage 2016, Calitzdorp Sauvignon Blanc 2018, Calitzdorp Pinotage Blanc de Noir 2018, Calitzdorp Chenin Blanc Muscat d’Alexandrie Delight 2018, Calitzdorp Merlot 2016 and Calitzdorp Pinotage 2016. For more information, please contact the cellar at

De Krans Wine Cellar
was awarded seven gold medals for their  De Krans Premium Moscato Red 2017, De Krans Free-Run Chenin Blanc 2018, De Krans Wild Ferment Chardonnay 2017, De Krans Pinotage Rosé 2018, De Krans Basket Press Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, De Krans Touriga Nacional 2017 and De Krans Cape Vintage 2016.  For more information,please contact the cellart

New Eight Citrus Gin by Boplaas

The exciting new Eight Citrus Gin joins a Boplaas portfolio of highly awarded drinks as a bold new expression and unique addition to the world of gin.

The small batch hand-crafted gin combines juniper and a trio of classical gin botanicals with the very best South African citrus fruits – orange, lemon, tangerine (naartjie), grapefruit, blood orange, lime, bitter orange and cumquat. The result is a burst of freshness and lashings of flavour. The gin is made on the Boplaas farm in Calitzdorp with the use of a multi-column still dubbed The Falcon. The same still is used for the crafting of Boplaas’s other acclaimed drinks, including an award-winning whisky.

“Eight Citrus Gin is unlike any other,” says Boplaas distiller Danie Nel. “Where the excellence of a fine gin can occasionally be lost in an inaccurately mixed G&T, this one is certain to bear up with aplomb. It’s just as excellent for sipping on ice or with a dash of mineral water.”

Daniel joined the family business in 2017 to spearhead Boplaas’s spirits range and breathe new life into the tradition of distilling craft spirits in Calitzdorp. He became the 6th generation distiller at the farm and now extends a distilling tradition that started in 1880, when his great-great grandfather exported the first batch of potstill brandy to London. New techniques coupled with traditional methods and experience has guaranteed Eight Citrus Gin pride of place in the well-regarded line up of Boplaas craft spirits.

For more information, visit

Boplaas excels at CAPPA 2018

Boplaas Family Vineyards in Calitzdorp has triumphed at the Cape Port and Wine Challenge 2018 with no less than three inclusions among the Top 10 red table wines and four among the best Ports.

Every year, the Cape Port Producers Association (CAPPA) rewards excellence across a range of wine categories. Boplaas, a consistent champion at the event, had its status re-affirmed in the latest edition last week with the inclusion of the Boplaas Ring of Rocks 2015, the Boplaas Touriga Nacional Family Reserve 2014 and the Boplaas Tinta Chocolat (Tinta Barocca) 2016 in the Top 10 Cape Portuguese Wines. The four wines in the Top 10 Ports were the Boplaas Cape Tawny N/V, Boplaas Cape Vintage 2015, Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve 2015 and 2016.  The Boplaas Cape Vintage Reserve Port 2005 was one of the only three Port wines in the Museum Class which showed great longevity after 13 years – testament to the world-class quality and age-ability of Boplaas Cape Ports.

For more information, please contact

Boplaas Portuguese selection

De Krans victorious at CAPPA 2018

The De Krans Cape Vintage Reserve 2015 and 2016 port-style wines were named as one of the Top 10 Cape Port Style winners at this year’s Cape Port Producers Association (CAPPA) Port & Wine Challenge. The De Krans Cape Vintage Reserve Port 2007 was one of three winners to be recognised in the Museum Class category, whilst the De Krans Tritonia Calitzdorp Blend 2016 and De Krans Touriga Nacional 2016 each secured a spot on the list for the Top 10 Cape Portuguese Wines.

For more information about De Krans and its range of award-winning ports and wines, contact the farm directly by email at

Soak up Summer with De Krans Free-Run
Chenin Blanc 2018

Regarded as one of SA’s leading port producers De Krans Wine Cellar, has also built a reputation for producing a range of unique and superb wines from classical varieties. With the emphasis on unique yet traditional, consumers will enjoy the new vintage unwooded De Krans Free-Run Chenin Blanc 2018 – perfect enjoyment for the long summer days!

What makes De Krans Free-Run Chenin Blanc stand out from traditional Chenin Blanc is that only free run juice – only approximately two-thirds of the total juice can be used to make the wine, which results in a fresh, well-rounded product. This 2018 vintage has already won a Gold Wine Award in the first competition entered. Winemaker Louis van der Riet describes the wine as showing a tropical freshness on the nose. An abundance of soft fresh tropical fruits, a well-rounded smooth structure and a lingering aftertaste, are prominent on the palate. Perfect on its own during a hot Sunday braai or enjoy with fresh snoek, barbeque chicken, or pastas and salads. Available directly from the farm, or selected specialist wine outlets nationwide at R60 per bottle.

For more information on this summer sizzler visit

Our thanks to our sponsor and
Friend of the Klein Karoo
Copyright © 2018 Klein Karoo Wine Route, All rights reserved.

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