Hi my name is constantin baum i’m a Master of wine and in one of my previous Blind tasting videos i mentioned that South africa is one of my weaknesses When it comes to blind tastings no Surprise that you voted overwhelmingly For south africa when i asked you which Country i should cover next thank you Guys seriously i’m looking forward to Putting my taste buds to the test and in The spirit of life-long learning i’m Going to taste these six south african Wines blind to see whether i can Identify them Let’s go [Music] South africa’s wine history is very Interesting even though it’s today Considered a new world country it Started producing wine in the 17th Century and for a while the great sweet Wines from constancia winery were more Expensive and more famous than the best Wines from europe but then philoxory hit And the industry focused more on Quantity rather than quality so the Reputation declined until the end of the 20th century when south africa got its Act back together today south africa is 92 000 hectares of vineyards less than Germany and most of the wine growing Regions are located close to the Atlantic and indian ocean which have a Cooling influence on the climate in

Those regions this is why it’s possible To grow cool climate grape varieties Such as shenan blonde sauvignon blanc Chardonnay and pinot noir shenan blonde Also known as stein is the most widely Planted grape variety here and south Africa is the biggest producer of chenin Blue in the world ahead of france the Sauvignon blanc chardonnays and pinot Noirs are widely planted and widely Distributed in the world and their Qualities have improved significantly But south africa is also known for warm Climate grape varieties such as cabernet Sauvignon which is the most widely Planted red grape variety shiraz and Pinotage pinotage south africa’s own Grape variety and it’s a crossing of Pinot noir and south seoul which is a Bit of a weird mix because pinot noir is One of the most highly regarded cool Climate grape varieties while sansa is More of a mass-market high-producing Warm climate grape variety however it Seems to work even though the Organization that represents south African wine refers to it as a work in Progress apart from pinotage the grape Varieties that grow in south africa are The well-known international grape Varieties it’s therefore not possible Just to go buy the grape variety in Order to get to the origin like you Would for example if you identify a wine

As a great nebulo in the blind tasting South africa sits somewhere in between The old world and the new world for me The wines can be a little bit more dirty And more herbaceous than most wines from The new world are usually the cabernet Sauvignons and sauvignon blanc in Particular have often flavors of tobacco Leaf and green bell pepper the Chardonnay and pinot noirs are often a Bit more concentrated than what you Would get out of burgundy but they can Be really good the shenanigans come in All shapes and sizes from really Concentrated rich and oaky which is more Typical for south africa and very fresh And light stars which can be confused With the lois one indicator that my Friends and i used during our Preparation for the exam much to the Anger of my south african mw mentor was Brett bretonomysis is a spoiler geese That generally survives in old barrels And that can give the wine aromas of Leather barnyard and well let’s be Honest poop bread can appear anywhere in The world but it rarely appears in new World wines and for some reason it has Become a bit of an issue in south africa Due to high ph levels or low acidity Levels and not so super clean barrel Sellers but now let’s get into the wines My intern selected these wines for me And soaked them up so that i can taste

Them blind so let’s find out whether i’m Actually as bad as some of you might Think with south african wines i can Tell you i got six wines three white Three red but that’s kind of all i know So far so let’s dig into them all right This is not easy but the way i approach These tastings normally is that i smell All of the wines first and then i taste Them all first And then i kind of start to make up my Decision it’s not good if you have Preconceived notions or if you go for Something too quickly and just relax Taste everything collect all of the Information and then start making Decisions why number two for me has Flavors of ripe lemon there’s also a Little bit of flavor of wet wool and This points me towards chenin blanc wet Wool is a pretty typical characteristic For that grape variety and this is not a Big and concentrated china it’s more of A refined and fresh style on the palette It’s pretty light and fresh it’s not a Great wine but it’s pretty good lively And refreshing So let’s see What we got here And it is Old vine shenan blonde from cloth street It is from the mulliner winery which is A pretty famous winery from the swat Land region

In the west Close to the ocean So one down and five more to go and the Next one is why number three why is this For me maybe a banker It’s because it has a pretty classic Expression for a rich and concentrated Chardonnay from south africa it smells Of lemon zest but there’s also quite a Lot of yeastiness Doughy flavor brioche notes whatever you Want to call it from the malolactic Fermentation and prolonged aging on the Leaves on the dead yeast cells which Give the wine more concentration more Weight on the palate it’s rich in Concentrated creamy but there’s also a Fresh vibrant finish so there’s also Acidity there this one is really well Made really really good wine that is a Lot of fun and i think i would put away A case of six bottles of this one easily This is definitely something that i like So let’s open this Bad boy And and and Yeah It’s hamilton russell vineyard Chardonnay One of the great classics from south Africa hamilton russell vineyards Producing really amazing wines from Chardonnay and pinot noir and this is Definitely a great example so this is

Not a cheap wine but it’s definitely one Worth seeking out and i just saw that it Only has 13 of alco which shows you that You can produce a rich and concentrated Wine without having a lot of alcohol in It so the next one i think i already Identified is wine number five it’s not The darkest wine so it has a slightly Lighter color medium intense color And it smells of licorice a little bit Of black olives and obviously also fruit Flavor so you have some blueberry Character coming through a little bit of Blackberries as well so this is quite a Complex flavor profile but for me some Of these flavors really remind me of one Grape variety and there’s also a slight Pepperiness a slight spiciness and this Kind of points me to shiraz or a grape Variety that produces great wines in South africa on the palate is quite Grippy and intense they are grainy quite Harsh tenons so it’s not the most Harmonious wine but it’s pretty good And yeah well i think this is a shiraz Or surah and it’s probably from swat Land because there are some really good Producers making nice syrahs over there So let’s have a look Let’s see The chocolate block Okay i know this label but what’s the Cuvee It is

71 percent Eleven percent grenache nine percent sun So I was pretty close i didn’t taste the Remaining 29 but sometimes that can be Really difficult but it is from from Scotland which is nice the tenons were a Little bit too harsh a little green for My taste which is not necessarily Something that i like a lot they might Have used quite a lot of whole bunch Where they include the stems in the Fermentation which adds some of the Spicy notes some of the black olive Notes but can also add a little bit of Harshness to the wine so let’s move on To the next one where i kind of think i Know what this might be which is wine Number four wine number four is Definitely not the best one in this Tasting so the wine smells of Blackberries ripe fruit but there’s also Some spicy notes coming through some of Those green flavors that i was talking About earlier you have a little bit of Tobacco leaf a little bit of harshness On the palate you have grippy tannins But they are also a little bitter so it Doesn’t feel like the fruit was really Imperfectly ripe there might have been Some berries there which weren’t quite Ripe so it’s not super balanced it’s not Terrible but it’s definitely not a great Wine so the combination of these green

Flavors with the blackberry fruit aromas And those quite intense slightly harsh Tannins points me towards cabernet Sauvignon cabernet sauvignon is widely Planted in south africa and there are Some really great examples coming out of South africa but also some not so great Ones and i think this is more of like an Entry-level style of cabernet so not Necessarily a great wine let’s check it Out So Let’s see The manor house cabinet sauvignon Yeah So it’s a cabernet sauvignon it’s not a Great Example of cabernet i don’t know whether This is 100 cabernet sauvignon there Might be something else in there but Well it’s not the greatest cabernet out Of south africa even not the greatest Cheaper japanese sauvignon that i’ve Tasted out of south africa so But Yeah so now we’re down to one red and One white wine and I’m A little bit stuck so let’s start with The white wine this smells very much Like chardonnay so there’s a lemon zest Flavor there but there’s also a lot of Oak a lot of concentration and a lot of Body there so i’m

Not really sure even though there are Not a lot of options really in my Opinion this could either be A oaky chardonnay or an oaky chenable or Stain i don’t really see this being Sauvignon blanc or anything Like this so i Have to taste again on the palette there Are slightly weird flavors coming Through there’s quite a lot of Creaminess and yeastiness but there’s Also something that reminds me of Baby diaper so It’s not really great in terms of flavor It’s quite oaky the fruit doesn’t come Through but on the finish you have good Freshness so there is vibrancy here i’m Still not 100 sure but i think because Of the lemon zest flavor slightly weird Flavor profile and the very pronounced Fresh acidity I Am more inclined to say this is shinner Alright So It is chenna blon from stellenbosch Actually the cradle and i don’t think This is a very cheap wine Not that great though so this seems to Be an old really well established winery Established in 1690 so pretty old But Yeah i don’t really like this style that Much i think that’s maybe more the

Problem it’s not a bad wine but it’s Just too oaky And i would like to see more of the Fruit and less of the oak so now we’re Down to the last one i had five wines Right which isn’t bad but to be honest It’s far more easy if you know what Country all of the wines come from that Just makes it a lot easier So yeah number six the wine smells of Cassis blackberries you got plum flavors Coming through there’s also some Influence of oak so it’s a complex Really well made wine definitely well Made wine but i still struggle to decide Which grape variety this could be for me This is not pinot noir too dark and to Ripe intense fruit flavors this is also Not shiraz or syrah because i don’t Really have any pepperiness going on no Black olive flavors coming through This could be a cabernet sauvignon a Really good one but a ryper style Maybe with a little bit more mellow in It this could also be a really well made Pinot tash a wine style that i haven’t Had in the tasting which Makes me think maybe there is a pinotage In this south africa tasting but i don’t Know for sure this could also be a Merlot blend so more merlot and maybe a Little bit of cabernet sauvignon in it It doesn’t really have the spiciness of Cabernet and that confuses me a little

Bit and the tannins are also more Rounded but in the end i have to make a Decision and i think i will go for Pinotage just because pinotage is a Grape variety that i don’t know super Well and maybe that’s why it doesn’t Jump at me and shouts at me i’m a Pinotage but it’s difficult it’s a Difficult wine and pinotage is a Difficult grape variety there are quite A lot of different expressions often you Have very strong tobacco notes coming From pinotage that can be a bit Off-putting you don’t have that at all In this one but yeah let’s check it out So let’s open this bad boy Up and it’s Pinotage It is a pinotage from canon cop which is One of the most well-known producers in South africa especially for this grape Variety so This is pretty high-end so this is a Little bit embarrassing because this is One of the great classics from south Africa and i didn’t pick up on it Straight away but well at least i got The grape variety right and at least i Proved that i can learn so my south African wine tasting skills Aren’t as bad as i thought but maybe i Was just lucky this time i hope you Enjoyed this video if you liked it then Please like it down here subscribe to my

Channel if you haven’t done so already There’s more stuff coming up so stay Tuned my question of the day is which is Your favorite south african wine just Comment down below I hope i see you guys again soon until Then stay Thirsty [Music] Hey [Music]