Welcome to the Western Cape Wineries - a kiwi's opinion blog

I originally set up this blog to help foreigners have an enjoyable experience when visiting the western cape wineries in South Africa.

I realised that it is very difficult for a tourist to choose where to go and which wineries to visit, when you have 600+ wine producers to choose from.

When I first moved to SA December 2010, my palate struggled to adjust to SA wine, b
ut after living here for a while and after visiting over 100+ wine estates, I have found many wines which I really like and can highly recommend.

Admittingly, when you come from another country it is hard not to compare the wine in SA to what you are used to back home. However, once you realise they are not the same (they have their own characteristics due to the different soil, climate etc) and appreciate their wines for being SA wines, it will improve your opinion and experience of the wines immediately.

If you are staying in SA for a while, don't dispair, your palate will change, and you will soon find yourself liking SA wine over your home countries wine!!

I hope my blog will help wine lovers have an enjoyable wine experience while in SA.

Please note: I am not a wine connoisseur. The comments I write about the wine is mostly for my own benefit of having them on record.

Monday, 24 June 2013


Today I finally made it to Meerlust and wow they have great wine!!

I have been hearing many people talk about Meerlust when they come visit Haskell Vineyards so I figured I shall have to go check out what all the fuss is about. Sure enough, it is the wine!!!

Chardonnay 2010 (R181 a bottle) spends 12 months in 60% new oak. Quite tangy, medium body, tart, almost some tangy granny smith apple taste.

Pinot Noir 2011 (R215 a bottle) spent 11 months in 70% new oak. This was light on the palate with slight wood/dry tones, was light on the nose with hints of plum and cherry. Slight sweet notes on the nose. Some dark undertones on the palate. I liked this wine.

Merlot 2009 (R225 a bottle) has 10% Cab Franc included. Capsicum/green aroma, it was intense!! Medium body, little spicy, lovely intense flavour, a lot of spicy berry flavours, it is a great wine!! Fruity on the palate, dark fruit flavours. I liked this wine a lot.

Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 (R225 a bottle) had lovely aromas of plums and blackberries on the nose, medium body, nice tobacco with a toasty taste. This was my favourite wine!! It has fantastic flavours and a lingering finish.

The Meerlust Red 2011 (R148 a bottle) is 52% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cab Franc and 5 % Petit Verdot. This wine is labelled as the Meerlust Red when it doesn't make the cut to be called the Rubicon. In other words, if the Rubicon wine is not up to scratch to be labelled the Rubicon, then it is sold for half price labelled as the Meerlust Red. In some people's eyes it is a bargain, for me it is a wine which didn't make the cut.... It was a little dry, had dark berry flavours, light on the palate. I thought this wine was just ok.

Last but not least we tried the Rubicon 2008 (R300 a bottle). It is ready to drink now but will be amazing in a few years. This is a Bordeaux style blend consisting of 70% cab, 20% Merlot, 10% Cab Franc. It was light - medium body. Lovely cherries, spicy hints on the nose, it was wow!! Fantastic. It had a smooth feeling on the palate, lovely flavours, beautifully balanced and a great wine!!

Overall, the visit to Meerlust was good. I was wowed by the wines. The service was pleasant and informative.  You are definitely visiting this place for the wine more than anything though!! Go, they have great wine but on the higher end when it comes to price.

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