Last weekend we hosted the latest in our Blind Tasting Challenge series. This time we took a lineup of traditional Bordeaux Blends from around the world and pitted them against one another. The voting was very tight this time around but eventually a winner emerged: (drum roll please) The De Toren "Z" Stellenbosch, South Africa, $31.99!
This wine is crafted to be softer and more approachable in it's youth than De Toren's Fusion V bottling that is a more structured cellaring candidate. I think the "Z" charmed our tasters with its rich fruit, depth, concentration and silky tannin structure. The wine also only displays subtle smoky characteristics that so often define South African reds. There is real quality here and a long tradition focused on producing world class Bordeaux style reds. For those of you that have drunk wine from Stellenbosch before, it should come as no surprise that this wine bested the rest of the field and is considerably less expensive than some of its competitors.
Here is the complete lineup:
1: 2009 La Fleur Calon, Montagne St Emilion, Bordeaux, France, $14.99
2:2010 Kathryn Kennedy Lateral, Napa Valley, California, $34.99
3: 2010 Viña Von Siebenthal "Parcela #7" Gran Reserva, Aconcagua Valley, Chile, $16.99
4: 2009Te Mata Estate “Coleraine” Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand, $49.99
5 2010 De Torien “Z” Stellenbosch, South Africa, $31.99
6:2010 Sapaio "Volpolo" Bolgheri, Italy, $34.99
7: 2009 Ch. Poujeaux, Moulis en Medoc, Bordeaux, France, $44.99
8: 2008 L'Ecole No. 41 "Perigee" Seven Hills Vineyard, Walla Walla Valley, Washington $44.99
9: 2010 Amelia Park Cabernet-Merlot, Margaret River, Western Australia $19.99
10: 2009 Sacred Hill "Helmsman" Cabernet-Merlot, Gimblett Gravels, Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand, $39.99
Until next time,