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South African Wine

Learn about South African wine, common tasting notes, where the region is and more ...

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With an important wine renaissance in full swing, impressive red and white bargains abound in South Africa. The country has a particularly long and rich history with winemaking, especially considering its status as part of the “New World.” In the mid-17th century, the lusciously sweet dessert wines of Constantia were highly prized by the European aristocracy. Since then, the South African wine industry has experienced some setbacks due to the phylloxera infestation of the late 1800s and political difficulties throughout the following century.

Today, however, South Africa is increasingly responsible for high-demand, high-quality wines—a blessing to put the country back on the international wine map. Wine production is mainly situated around Cape Town, where the climate is generally warm to hot. But the Benguela Current from Antarctica provides brisk ocean breezes necessary for steady ripening of grapes. Similarly, cooler, high-elevation vineyard sites throughout South Africa offer similar, favorable growing conditions.

South Africa’s wine zones are divided into region, then smaller districts and finally wards, but the country’s wine styles are differentiated more by grape variety than by region. Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault, is the country’s “signature” grape, responsible for red-fruit-driven, spicy, earthy reds. When Pinotage is blended with other red varieties, like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah or Pinot Noir (all commonly vinified alone as well), it is often labeled as a “Cape Blend.” Chenin Blanc (locally known as “Steen”) dominates white wine production, with Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc following close behind.

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  • Eagles' Nest Viognier 2013 Front Label
    Eagles' Nest Viognier 2013
    Viognier from Constantia, South Africa
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    • Babylonstoren Viognier 2013 Front Label
      Babylonstoren Viognier 2013
      Viognier from South Africa
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      • The Foundry Viognier 2013 Front Label
        The Foundry Viognier 2013
        Viognier from Stellenbosch, South Africa
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        • La Petite Ferme Viognier 2013 Front Label
          La Petite Ferme Viognier 2013
          Viognier from Franschhoek Valley, South Africa
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          • Lynx Viognier 2013 Front Label
            Lynx Viognier 2013
            Viognier from Franschhoek Valley, South Africa
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            • Saronsberg Viognier 2013 Front Label
              Saronsberg Viognier 2013
              Viognier from South Africa
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              • Six Hats Viognier 2013 Front Label
                Six Hats Viognier 2013
                Viognier from South Africa
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                  Currently Unavailable $9.99
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                • Welmoed Wines Viognier 2013 Front Label
                  Welmoed Wines Viognier 2013
                  Viognier from Stellenbosch, South Africa
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                    Currently Unavailable $8.99
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                  • Noble Hill Wine Estate Viognier 2013 Front Label
                    Noble Hill Wine Estate Viognier 2013
                    Viognier from South Africa
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