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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Stark-Conde Stellenbosch Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Stark-Conde Stellenbosch Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
(search item no. 111612)
Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $24.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The grapes for this wine are from 4 different cabernet vineyards and our best merlot and cabernet franc vineyards, all at a mix of different elevations. Although all are on the decomposed granite soils typical of the hillsides in Jonkershoek, the soil textures vary quite a lot and that, together with the differences in elevations and clones, gives a variety of different flavor profiles to the grapes.

After 18 months barrel maturation the blend was assembled and put back to barrels for a further 4 months integration. Bottled unfined and unfiltered after 22 months barrel maturation.

My Notes:

About Stark-Conde:

I never went to school to study winemaking but rather did my time reading books and experimenting along the way. I'm pretty stubborn, which turns out to be a good thing.

Crafting wine requires patience and the crazy belief that the shortest line drawn between two points may not always be the right one. Take a simple task like fruit-sorting. That's when we meticulously go through all the de-stemmed berries to pick out any under-ripe or bird-damaged fruit, leaves, stems and other MOG (Matter Other than Grapes). During harvest. there comes a point when everyone's exhausted and baskets of grapes keep coming. It's even debatable how much difference sorting will make in the end. That's when the stubborn kicks in.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm the only one having so much fun. We stick to traditional winemaking methods; we ferment our juice in open tanks, do hand-punchdowns around the clock, basket press, and mature the wines in small French oak barrels. The name Stark-Condé is a simple marriage of my wife's family name and my own.
- José Conde, winemaker