South Africa’s Top Shiraz and Shiraz Blends announced

The results of the 2014 Shiraz SA Wine Challenge, were announced at a luncheon held at the Vineyard Hotel in Newlands on Friday 20 June.

The competition, presented by Shiraz SA, secured international sponsorship from the French cooperage company Tonnelerie Berthomieu Ermitage. Berthomieu, represented in South Africa by Juvenal Cork SA, has been in stave production for four generations and is currently the largest producer of French oak staves with an annual production equivalent of 70 000 barrels.

It is the second year that Shiraz SA presents the competition after Wine Magazine discontinued their Shiraz Challenge a few years ago and this year the organizers decided to include a category for Shiraz blends. The decision to incorporate Shiraz blends was taken because of the enormous popularity these wines enjoy and also the vast number of blends available. “The main objective of Shiraz SA is to promote the image of South African Shiraz and it just made sense to enhance the variety’s blending potential,” said Edmund Terblanche, chairman of Shiraz SA.

A total of 191 wines were entered and evaluated over a period of 3 days by a panel of 7 knowledgeable Shiraz judges. Renowned auditing company Deloitte & Touche kept a watchful eye on the whole judging process. .

Dr Andy Roediger, Cape Wine Master, acted as chairperson and convener of the judging panel. He was assisted by Richard Rowe, Australian winemaker and currently consulting winemaker and brand ambassador to KWV, Carl Schultz (Hartenberg), Niels Verburg (Luddite), Francois Naudé (Rhebokskloof) and Anthony de Jager (Fairview).

In general the judges felt that it was a strong range of Shiraz and Shiraz blends with the top wines showing finesse and concentration of flavor. And what must certainly be music to the ears of Shiraz producers is the fact that the panel considered a number of older wines to be brilliant.

Electricity was in the air when the 32 finalists, members of the media, fellow producers and other distinguished guests gathered to learn the names of the top-scoring wines and their producers:

Shiraz Top 12 for 2014

Black Elephant Vintners Amistad Syrah 2012

Boschkloof Louis 57 Syrah 2012

Boschkloof Syrah 2012

Cederberg Shiraz 2011

Fairview Beacon Shiraz 2011

Hartenberg Shiraz 2010

Jordan The Prospector Syrah 2012

KWV Abraham Perold Insignis 2012

KWV The Mentors Shiraz 2012

Oldenburg Syrah 2011

Rickety Bridge Shiraz 2011

Saronsberg Provenance Shiraz 2012

Top 4 Shiraz blends for 2014:

Boschendal 1685 S & M 2012

Eikendal Charisma 2012

Guardian Peak Summit 2012

Rickety Bridge The Foundation Stone 2012

It is the second year in succession that Boschkloof and KWV walk off with two trophies each in the Shiraz category. Rickety Bridge was also a double trophy winner – one for their Shiraz and one for their Shiraz blend. First-time entrants Black Elephant Vintners, Boschendal and Guardian Peak were most excited to find themselves also amongst the winners.

Wine-of-the-Month Club will have exclusive rights to the marketing and sales of mixed cases of the winning wines. Winning wines will be able to display the eye-catching decal specially designed for this purpose.

Two years ago Juvenal SA came on board with sponsorship for the annual Shiraz Showcase and Techinical Workshop. “With Tonnelerie Berthomieu as partner it was a natural step to increase the sponsorship to incorporate the Shiraz SA Wine Challenge as well” said CEO Johan Conradie. “We are grateful for the opportunity to get involved with the Shiraz SA Wine Challenge and show our support for the local wine industry” added Conradie

The 6th annual Shiraz Showcase, also sponsored by amongst others Berthomieu, takes place on 1 August from 18:00-21:00. For the fourth year running the Vineyard Hotel in Claremont will host the event in their Summerhouse venue.

Tickets at R120 per person can be bought via Webtickets or at the door. This includes a stylish tasting glass, a brochure and a special array of snacks that compliment Shiraz. To avoid disappointment, please pre-book as a limited number of tickets are available.

Special accommodation packages which include breakfast and a two course meal at the Square Restaurant are offered by the hotel. This offer is valid only for guests attending the Showcase and for more details kindly contact The Vineyard Hotel at hotel@vineyard.co.za or 021 657 4500.

For further details contact Sandra Lotz on 082 924 7254 or send an e-mail to info@shirazsa.co.za

Twitter: @Shiraz_SA

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