Steenberg Unveils Two New Vintage Wines

Words: Crush

Steenberg Vineyards has raised the bar with the release of new vintages of two flag-bearers for this celebrated Constantia wine producer, the flagship Magna Carta white blend and the statuesque Lady R Méthode Cap Classique.

The Magna Carta 2015 strongly reflects the Steenberg terroir and cool, long growing season by showing absolute fruit purity and clean minerality. A blend of Sauvignon Blanc (60%) and Semillon (40%), this is a South African benchmark wine of immense standing.

“2015 was a remarkable white wine vintage at Steenberg and our Magna Carta is testament to that. Small changes in the cellar have resulted in a wine with elegance, class and finesse that I am confident will mark our greatest declaration of quality at Steenberg,” says cellarmaster JD Pretorius.

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The Sauvignon Blanc component comes from old Steenberg vines harvested during the early morning to protect the subtle flavour nuances. The Semillon was picked at full ripeness, fermented in French oak and left in barrel for a total of two months. After blending, the wine went back into 30% new and 70% used French oak barrels of varying ages.

Subtle aromas of blackcurrant leaf, orange and peach blossom, lime rind, tropical fruit and spiciness interlace with a beautifully textured palate of great structure and zesty acidity. The wine is superbly balanced with optimal wood integration.

Nuanced and ever-evolving, it shows well now, but will gain further complexity with careful cellaring. Freshness and fullness make the Magna Carta 2015 a veritable food wine, ideal with lobster, duck, foie gras and salmon tartare.

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Seriously structured, yet elegant, rich and refreshing, Steenberg Lady MCC R 2011 resonates the spirited life of the feisty Catharina Ras, Steenberg’s 17th century founder. Only the second vintage to be released, Lady R MCC 2011 owes its complexity, texture and richness to the almost five years spent on the lees after secondary bottle fermentation to create the fine bead and lively mousse – a number echoed serendipitously by Catharina’s five husbands.

Crafted in the classic French tradition of Pinot Noir (70%) and Chardonnay (30%), from pristine free running juice from whole bunch pressed grapes, this is a grande cuvée of great finesse. Fermentation of the Chardonnay base wine in old French oak casks lends richness and texture which is offset elegantly by the fresh acidity of the Pinot Noir.

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Aromatically, Lady R MCC 2011 shows hints of crisp red apple, rhubarb, candied lemon, fynbos honey, treacle and honeyed biscuits. The textured, racy palate with refreshing acidity is balanced by the richness of creamed honey and toasty brioche with the promise of exceptional longevity.

The Steenberg Magna Carta 2015 has a cellar door price of R525 per bottle whilst the Steenberg Lady R MCC 2011 sells for R435. Both wines are available at selected fine dining restaurants and boutique wine shops. | Facebook | Twitter


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