Groot Constantia Pinotage
Groot Constantia Pinotage
The Groot Constantia winery is over 300 years old, with a history dating back to 1685. Even kings desired the Groot Constantia wines, with King Louis Philippe of France placing his first order for a large quantity of wine from the South African winery in 1833. Today it is an estate of 165 hectares and a popular tourist destination for people interested in South African red wine, Cape Dutch architecture, and South African history. The vineyards cover 87 hectares at altitudes ranging from 60 to 280 metres above sea level. The Groot Constantia winery also features museums and restaurants and is located on the Cape Peninsula with a view of False Bay.
Other Groot Constantia wines include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz, Rood, and Merlot. The various wines produced have won many awards. The Groot Constantia Pinotage 2011 vintage specifically won a silver medal in the 2013 International Wine & Spirit Competition, while the 2010 vintage won a gold in the 2012 Classic Wine Trophy. Awards from earlier vintages of this wine reach as far back as 1988.
After harvesting early in the year, the Pinotage grapes were fermented until dry, with four pump-overs per day. The initial sugar content of the grapes was close to 25%. The pumpover process provides oxygen and results in more intense flavor and tannin levels than punch down methods. The wine was then aged for 16 months in a mix of barrel types: 28% in new French oak barrels, 42% in second-fill barrels, and 30% in third-fill barrels. Newer barrels absorb more flavour and tannins, so using a mix of new and old barrels ensures a balance of flavour when the wine is eventually blended and bottled. Winemaker Boela Gerber supervised the process, assisted by Rudolph Steenkamp. Although Pinotage is a grape that is naturally high in tannins, the vinification process tames these tannins with palatable results.
Pinotage is a cross of Pinot noir and Cinsaut and a staple of South African red wine. The Groot Constantia Pinotage grapes came from established vines grown in deep Glenrosa and Cartref soils. Glenrosa is a dry, fast-draining, gravelly soil, and Cartref has similar characteristics. The coastal location of the winery provides cool breezes off of the Atlantic Ocean combined with a Mediterranean climate, with an average rainfall of 1100mm per annum. Rainfall is consistent enough that irrigation is not required. These cool conditions result in a complexity of flavour and a beautifully balanced wine. The grapes are harvested from mid-February to early March. Warm and dry conditions result in concentrated and expressive flavors.
This South African Pinotage wine is full-bodied with intense red colour. A mix of ripe red fruits, such as raspberries and plums, framed by toasted oak, follow through from the initial scent through the palette. Soft tannins result in a red wine that is easy to drink and result in a full, round flavour. You may also find notes of dark chocolate, coffee, red cherries, and strawberries. The Groot Constantia Pinotage UK is a dry red wine with 2 g/l of residual sugar, and with an average acidity level imparted by 5.5 g/l total acidity and a pH of 3.67.
The Groot Constantia Pinotage pairs well with Chicken Bobotie, Beef Shin, Tomato and
Olive Stew or Curry Potjie, if you are looking for South African culinary pairings to your South African Pinotage wine. Like many red wines, it complements red meats and hearty flavours, such as those found in beef casserole, game pie, venison burgers, smoked duck, Springbok with peppercorn sauce, and slow-roasted leg of lamb. Recipes that require chili and smoke are ideal. For a cheese platter, try the Groot Constantia Pinotage UK with hard cheeses and fresh figs. Vegetable dishes include grilled portabello mushrooms, dark greens, and aubergines.
Serve at 18 degrees Celsius, just below room temperature. The wine has a medium-high alcohol content of 14.13%.
Country / Region / Appellation
ZA / Constantia / Constantia Wine of Origin