2020 Oldenburg Vineyards Rhodium

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2020 Oldenburg Vineyards Rhodium

Cabernet Franc and Merlot led Bordeaux Blend - a rarity in SA that will leave you questioning why that is the case.

Tasting Notes 

Nose

Both red and black fruit jump out of the glass along with the tell-tale signs of Cab Franc – tea leaf and dried herbs. These mingle perfectly with a hint of baking spice and violet, adding to the allure of the wine.

Palate

On the palate, it is weighty and savoury with some grip from the fine grained tannin. The finish is seemingly endless. Built to last. World class.

Oldenburg Rhodium

The Story

Oldenburg’s ultra-premium Rondekop Series draws its name from; you guessed it… Rondekop, the iconic hill situated in the middle of the Oldenburg property. Whether it’s the single varietal Stone Axe Syrah, Per Se Cabernet Sauvignon or the Rhodium Bordeaux Blend – they are all a small selection of the best barrels coming off Rondekop.

Oldenburg’s proprietor – Adrian Van der Spuy – spent a large portion of his life working in the world of precious metals and the name of this wine is a homage to that. Rhodium is one of the world’s most expensive metals and is frequently used in top end jewellery manufacture – and 80% of the world’s supply is mined in South Africa. Fitting name.

Winery

Oldenburg; a hot topic from a cool climate. Anyone who knows anything about South African wine should have Oldenburg fully on their radar – they are producing outrageously good wine and have, very arguably, the most beautiful tasting room to visit in the Cape. Oldenburg, situated in the Banghoek Valley of Stellenbosch, has one of the coolest microclimates in the region. A combination of a mountain amphitheatre, high altitude and cooling winds result in growing conditions about 5 degrees cooler than the rest of Stellenbosch.

Vintage Conditions

2020 was another exceptional harvest. The winter months saw good rainfall – only slightly less compared to the previous year. Spring brought ideal conditions, leading to even bud-break and homogenous shoot growth. The summer ripening period was consistent and moderate, and without heat spikes, bringing about uniform flavour development and phenolic ripeness in the grapes.

Winemaking & Maturation

Grapes were hand-picked and meticulously hand-sorted before destemming. Prior to fermentation, the Cabernet Sauvignon was crushed, while the Cabernet Franc and Merlot were fermented as whole berries. After 5 days of cold soak, fermentation using wild yeast began. During fermentation 1 to 3 punchdowns were done per day for optimal extraction. Post-fermentation, the wine underwent 18 months of maturation as well as malolactic conversion in French oak barrels (28% new).

Accolades

  • 95 points | Tim Aitkin

      Specifications

      Year 2020
      Bottle Size 750ml
      Cultivar 60% Cabernet Franc, 30% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon
      Country South Africa
      Alcohol content
      14.2% alc vol 
      Units of Alcohol per Bottle 10.6 units
      Type Red Wine
      Food Match Beef Wellington or a classic Italian Melanzane.
      Cellaring Potential 13 to 18 years
      Allergen Information Contains sulphites
      Origin Stellenbosch
      Appellation WO Western Cape