This weekend was supposed to be spent in Alavesa, the eastern part of Rioja in Spain. Visiting Contino, Bai Gorri, and others, staying at Hotel Marqués de Riscal, and dining at the likes of Meson Chuhci, and Hector Oribe. Unfortunate, and much more important events, prevented us from going, and we had to take a rain-check on our Rioja adventure.
Inspired by the weather forecast in Northern Spain, and looking out of the window at the heavy rain here in Oslo, we picked out a wine to go with dinner from an area on their way to summer, rather than winter like we are.
La Motte is a winery located in the Franschhoek Valley in South Africa’s Cape winelands. It’s availability around the world is widespread (although I think for some weird reason, they’re not in the US yet?!), and prices are for the most part on the good value-side. Their vineyards comprise 108 hectares, of which half are younger than ten years. planted with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Shiraz, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
When we visit South Africa sometime in the next 12 months, we’ll write in more detail about the wines, the winemakers, and the other marvels of the wonderful country. Today it’s about the wine only, their 08 Shiraz in particular.
A very dark ruby, with some hints of violet. Immediate tellicherry pepper aromas on the nose, the freshly grounded kind. mineral notes, warm dark fruits, tobacco, and various spices. Oak flavors. Fruity and juicy on the palate, oaky, and medium length. A hint of mineral on the end.
Hopefully it will integrate the oak with some years in the cellar – yes, most high-end South African wines now have the structure and complexity needed to cellar well. We think so about the 08 La Motte Shiraz, and thinks it’s a good choice of Wine of the Weekend. Just remember to wait a couple of years before you drink it, that is, if vanilla and warm fruit flavors are not you cup of tea. This wine drinks well now, but will definitely (also) be worth the wait.