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Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Natte Valleij Swartland Cinsault
92POINTS
17/20

Natte Valleij Swartland Cinsault 2017

Swartland, Coastal Region, South AfricaYoung winemaker Alex Milner suddenly became very cinsault-centric when a professor told him not to bother reading the cinsault chapter in his textbook because it would be worthless to him. Fast forward from that 2011 conversation to today, and The Natte Valleij Cinsault Collective. Alex set out to find forgotten patches of old dryland bush vine Cinsault across the Western Cape, expressing their individualities through low-interference winemaking. These dry farmed bush vines were planted in 1986 on decomposed Malmesbury shale, lying on an eastern facing, morning-sunned slope. This was aged in foudres, with 20% stems (left in the full sun for a day). That shale shines through, with a brooding, broken stone base, bedding wild plum, dusky raspberry, medicinal cherry, and thorny scrubby, salt tossed, eucalypt-scented herbs. This has a lovely firm structure that works so well to form the fruit. Really settling into itself with some bottle age. 800 bottles.Tasted: 08 January 2020Tasted by: Treve RingPrices: BC 49.00 private wine shops Producer: Natte ValleyDistributors: Sur Lie
Grape: Cinsault