2017 De Toren Z

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2017 De Toren Z
2017 De Toren Z
2017 De Toren Z
2017 De Toren Z

Reveals subtle hints of spices, ripe blackberries, plum and cherries. The integrated, complex and beautifully rounded tannins of this expressive and superbly vibrant blend ensure a velvety, lingering finish. At the olfactory level, there is a subtle hint of aniseed on the nose. This full-bodied blend maintains a sleek tannin structure with an immaculate developing palate.

Charles Williams | Cellar Master

Tasting Notes

This soft, approachable ruby-hued beauty is a true testament to vines lovingly reared and winemaking raised to an art form. A Right Bank-style Bordeaux blend, De Toren Z comprises a symphonic blend of five Bordeaux varietals. You’ll find it tantalizingly soft on the tongue, with a hint of aniseed, liquorice, raspberry and cranberries lending a fresh acidity to its polished finish… plus, of course, all the finesse that makes Bordeaux-style wines so prized among the world’s most enthusiastic wine lovers.

De Toren Z


When the stars and all the elements collide to produce a spectacularly good harvest, the results are always felt (and tasted, of course) in the wine. Industry wide the season of 2017 was earmarked as spectacular, and for De Toren, it was no different. The year 2017 is fondly remembered by our team for the incredible craftsmanship that went into producing one of the most outstanding vintages yet of De Toren Z, our famed Right Bank Bordeaux-styled blend.It was a season when perfectly ripened vine fruits were optimally harvested; gently reaped and sorted by the hands of our team of ladies, so that only the finest grapes were put forward for pressing and maturation in the cellar. This is the journey that our cellar team at De Toren undertook to co-create a superlative wine, i.e., De Toren Z 2017 vintage, in partnership with our key collaborator, Mother Nature. The favourable weather conditions of the season contributed to making the 2017 vintage one of the finest yet. It was a year in which the vines were perfectly balanced and restrained, producing the smallest, most concentrated berries. These hand-harvested grapes were transformed by sustainable and intelligent viniculture, resulting in this coveted vintage of De Toren Z being the highest awarded vintage yet and a true collector’s prize. At De Toren, the noble Bordeaux varietals are an expression of ancient South African soils and our signature winemaking style. As a result of all these factors – terroir, timing, technique and passion – commands attention on the palate when savouring the acclaimed De Toren Z 2017.


De Toren proprietors Emil and Sonette den Dulk left Johannesburg in 1991 to establish their vineyards in the Polkadraai Hills of Stellenbosch. Situated on southern-facing slopes overlooking False Bay De Toren enjoys the cooling effect of constant ocean breezes. Taking a holistic approach to keeping vineyard soils healthy and balanced viticulturalist Ernest Manuel employs sustainable farming practices throughout the property. Infrared Aerial Imaging is used extensively in order to monitor ripeness in various vineyard blocks and determine optimal picking times although actual harvesting and production are done almost entirely by hand. The winery is operated on gravity flow principles; a 4000 liter pressure tank in an elevator shaft (the Tower from which the winery takes its name) is cleverly used to exploit gravity in transporting wine between tanks and barrels without the use of mechanical pumps. As a result of De Toren’s innovative minimal intervention production methods their wines were among the first South African bottlings to qualify for IP (Integrated Production) certification by the Wine and Spirit Board.

The Den Dulks and winemaker Albie Koch seem to have found the key to success with their simple winemaking philosophy: gentle handling no pumps and minimum manipulation. Armed with this winning formula the boutique farm has quickly risen to the ranks of South Africa’s winemaking elite with their duo of dazzling stylish and complex five-varietal Bordeaux blends: the flagship Fusion V (which debuted in the 1999 vintage and has been hailed by Wine Spectator as a consistently polished outstanding Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend) and the Merlot-based Z introduced with the 2004 vintage.


This is indeed a decidedly beautiful wine. As a result, UK-based Master of Wine (SA), Greg Sherwood, granted the De Toren Z 2017 a remarkable 95 points. British Master of Wine, Tim Atkin, was of the same opinion and awarded it a stellar 93 points. These scores make the renowned De Toren Z 2017 vintage the highest awarded vintage to date.

Such has been the demand for this superior wine that most of this reputable vintage’s production,  limited-edition bottles have already found their place with eager oenophiles. There is however a small reserve still available since De Toren has finally released the last few cases for acquirement one last time. Lovers of fine wine and serious collectors alike should not hesitate to claim the last few remaining bottles. This wine will reward at nearest enjoyment and promises to be even more exceptional in time as it carries an aging potential of 18 years plus.  


    Year 2017
    Bottle Size 750ml
    Cultivar 16% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot, 54% Merlot, 12% Malbec, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon
    Country South Africa
    Alcohol content
    14.5% alc vol 
    Units of Alcohol per Bottle 10.9 units
    Type Red Wine
    Allergen Information Contains sulphites
    Cellaring Potential Drink from 2022 to 2036
    Food Matches This wine is a very versatile food pairing wine due to its great acidity and weight. It works exceptionally well with very fine spicy foods. Its aromass of mulberries and blueberries perfectly complements rich fish, lamb, duck, beef and poultry.
    Origin Stellenbosch
    Appellation WO Western Cape