Founded by Paul Boutinot in 2004, Waterkloof is a family-owned farm using organic practices. The farm is perched high up on the windswept Schapenberg, overlooking False Bay and The Atlantic Ocean. Living soils, naturally low yields and a long growing season help provide talented Cellarmaster Nadia Barnard with naturally balanced grapes that are imbued with a truly defining sense of origin. Those grapes are then transformed into wine with a minimum of intervention. The resulting wines are fine, inimitable and best enjoyed with food.
As well as being ECOCERT certified as organic, and working biodynamically, Waterkloof goes much further than many in its efforts to be a highly sustainable winery. A member of The Integrated Production of Wine Scheme, a voluntary environmental sustainability scheme established by the South African wine industry in 1998, and of The Wine and Agricultural Ethical Trading Association, a multi-stakeholder, non-profit voluntary organisation which actively promotes ethical trade in the wine industry, it is has also been a member of the World Wildlife Fund’s Biodiversity & Wine Initiative from its inception. Through a partnership between the IPW and the BWI, Waterkloof is a WWF Conservation Champion and has in place a formal nature conservation plan that includes: clearing approximately 55 hectares of land from alien invader species and restoring the Cape’s precious indigenous flora and fauna; re-establishing natural vegetation in previously disturbed areas; introducing preventive erosion control measures; providing migration corridors for species between isolated areas of natural vegetation; mulching of winter cover crops to create a healthy environment for the natural predators of vine pests and installing perches for birds of prey for natural rodent control measures.
Seriously Cool Cinsault is crafted from bio-dynamically farmed 50-60 year old bush-vine vineyards in the Helderberg area. The vineyards are close to the ocean, which ensure a long growing season and allows for ripe fruit with good concentration and a balanced acidity. Production from these grand dames of South African viticultural heritage is a miserly 4 tons/hectare.
Grapes are hand-harvested and brought to the cellar, where the bunches are hand-sorted and fermented whole-bunch in large wooden fermenters. Alcoholic fermentation starts spontaneously inside the berry from the naturally occurring yeast. After around 3 days of this intracellular fermentation the grapes are punched down twice daily with feet to ensure that the berries are broken slowly and softly and not over extracted. The wine is kept on the skins for a minimum of 30 days. ‘Powered’ through gravity alone, the wine runs down to a tank below. The remaining berries, fall into the basket press where they are gently pressed. The soft pressing and the free-run are then placed together in second and third fill 600L French oak barrels to finish malolactic fermentation and the wine is then aged for 8 months. This wine expresses the grapes in their purest form and no fining agents were added. Only sulphur was added and no other additions, such as tartaric acid or enzymes were allowed.
A fine and friendly expression of the Cape’s most under-rated variety. Bright fresh cherry fruits on the nose with a savoury, fynbos finesse. On the palate it has a cranberry freshness and texture with taut acidity and tremendous length.
This wine would pair nicely with duck, pigeon and also a rack of lamb. If you do follow the recommended half-hour chilling in the fridge before serving, it's a fabulous match with a plate of spicy charcuterie.