Oldenburg Vineyards Rondekop SeriesOldenburg is the boutique Stellenbosch estate making exemplary wines from treasured ancient terroirs. Following on from last week’s incredibly popular Chardonnay & Chenin Blanc release, we are excited to offer exclusively to the UK the 2020 Rondekop Series. The Rondekop Series are Oldenburg’s top-flight red wines, the jewels in the estate's crown. Made in tiny quantities, they come from their most prized vineyards on what Jane Anson calls “the iconic Rondekop hill”. At less than £33 per bottle IB, they chime with Neal Martin’s recent comments: “South Africa is frankly unbeatable in terms of quality-to-price ratio”. Each wine from this impressive trio displays its own unique character from the hugely diverse, mineral rich soils on this special hill. We found them simply irresistible.
2020 Oldenburg Vineyards Rondekop Stone Axe£197.00 In Bond £252.47 Inc VAT
Goedhuis, March 2023
Named after the stone axes discovered in the vineyard’s iron-rich soils that date from over 100,000 years ago, Oldenburg’s fresh, elegant ‘Stone Axe’ Syrah could appear in a blind tasting of Northern Rhone Syrah and never be caught out thanks to its cool granite terroirs. The 2020 is packed with soft red cherry and blue fruits plus iris, lavender, thyme and delicious white pepper. A small amount of whole bunch fermentation (18%) and maturation in a combination of Stockinger casks and smaller barrels, old and new, gives a gorgeous vivid fruit profile and well-judged spice, a glorious backdrop to the gleaming acidity and soft, powdery tannins. Only 750 cases produced. Drink 2023-2032.
Tim Atkin, March 2023, Score: 94
The evocatively named Stone Axe Syrah hails from a single parcel on mixed granite and sandstone soils that was picked in four stages. Nic van Aarde used 30% whole bunches for texture and perfume here, producing a red with thyme and oregano aromas, gentle tannins, lots of zip and vibrancy and subtle oak. Very promising. Drink 2024-2030.
Greg Sherwood MW, March 2023, Score: 94
Plenty of tarry, smoky black bramble berry fruits, olive, sweet black peppercorns, grilled herbs, cured meats and saline black berry fruits. Palate is super sleek and elegant with lovely intensity but light touch intensity, pristine purity and a weightless, savoury, spicy concentration with manicured tannins. Wonderfully characterful, classy and pure but beautifully classical. Very impressive.
2020 Oldenburg Vineyards Rondekop Per Se£197.00 In Bond £252.47 Inc VAT
Goedhuis, March 2023
The Banghoek Valley is 2 to 3 degrees cooler than the rest of Stellenbosch and this is evident in the cooler Cabernet tones of this gorgeous 2020. Sourced from the lower slopes of the Rondekop where the soils are rich in iron, this 100% Cabernet Sauvignon bottling is notable for its fresh core and mouth-watering acidity. Racy and focused yet with lovely, sweet red and black fruit density to match, it is peppered with fresh tobacco, crushed rocks, vanilla pod, cedar and blackcurrant leaf. The smooth tannins give structure to the sumptuous cassis fruit while the bright acidity keeps it nimble and elegant. Only 1,000 cases produced. Drink 2025-2035.
Greg Sherwood MW, March 2023, Score: 94+
Show and expressive nose of tilled earth, savoury black berry, tobacco, earthy cassis, black cherry, fynbos, delicate dried herbs and graphite… then cherry and parma violet. A fine sinewy line of tannins is evident with a precise mineral focus supported by fresh glassy acids. Opens and develops beautifully in the glass. A very smart Cabernet Sauvignon indeed.
2020 Oldenburg Vineyards Rondekop Rhodium£197.00 In Bond £252.47 Inc VAT
Goedhuis, March 2023
Winemaker Nic’s love for Cabernet Franc started while working at Ch Angelus. He loves how it flourishes in Oldenburg terroir and lets it have the limelight in their flagship blend, Rhodium. 60% Cabernet Franc is knitted together with 30% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon in this wondrous 2020. Fresh and floral, the 2020’s elegant perfume shows high-toned raspberry, juicy blackberry and violets tinged with cigar box and pencil shavings. Cashmere in texture, with plenty of plush, pretty fruit and an amazing herbal freshness. A delightfully sculpted wine with a fine, refreshing acidity and a long, herbal, fruit-filled finish with bursts of raspberry and blackcurrant. Only 1,000 cases produced. Drink 2023-2031.
Tim Atkin, March 2023, Score: 95
Rhodium is now Cabernet Franc based, with support from 30% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and is all the better for it. This is the best vintage yet of this Banghoek blend, with leafy, capsicum and parsley perfume, fine-grained oak, svelte tannins and a core of blueberry, red cherry and cinnamon spice. Bravo! Drink 2024-2032.
Greg Sherwood MW, March 2023, Score: 96
A blend of 60% Cabernet Franc, 30% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. Shows a classical Stellenbosch nose of sweet cedar, tilled earth, sappy black and blueberry fruits, bouquet garner and dusty graphite hints. The palate is sleek and beautifully polished with a silky texture, bright red and black cherry fruit notes, some iodine and salinity, finishing with a harmonious, effortless intensity but also an understated, compact concentration. Lovely length, elegance and pedigree.
Jane Anson, March 2023, Score: 93
Cabernet Franc-dominant in its aromatics and taste profile, this has arrow-straight direction, and bright and vibrant blue- and red-fruit character, with silky tannins. The oak is present but not overpowering, and it would suit being served slightly cool to bring out the freshness. Think ripe Loire rather than Bordeaux in terms of its character. Another impressive wine from Nic van Aarde, from vines located on the iconic Rondekop hill. 46% new oak. 13.5%. Drink 2023–2036
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- DP: Duty Paid. Wines for immediate UK delivery must be purchased Duty Paid. VAT is payable on Duty Paid wines. Wines which have been removed from Bond cannot subsequently be returned to Bond. They must remain Duty Paid but can be purchased as such for storage subject to VAT.
- EP: En Primeur. These wines are lying in the Domaines’ cellars until shipping. They can only be purchased In Bond. On arrival in the UK these wines can either be stored In Bond in Private Reserves or another bonded warehouse or delivered directly to you. When you decide to take delivery, Duty and VAT at the prevailing rate become payable.