International businessman Johann Rupert’s model wine-enterprise, named for his late brother, has 18th-century Franschhoek estate L’Ormarins as its mountain-silhouetted home. The venture encompasses an internationally awarded sextet of brands, and visitor attractions such as the 100+ year retrospective Franschhoek Motor Museum, linked to two tasting venues by bespoke trams. Grapes are sourced from the venture’s prime vineyards in Darling, Swartland, Elandskloof and the home farm, as well as other significant sites including old-vine parcels around the winelands. Vinified in custom, dedicated facilities such as the Cape of Good Hope Cellar, equipped with on-trend, amphora-shaped Italian concrete tanks. The team’s commitment to incremental improvements in both the vineyards and cellar is reaping rewards in the bottle.
From ±700-m elevation Elandskloof vineyard, picked in 2 stages. 2016 same high-toned cherry fruit, vibrant acid & gentle silky grip as previous, but greater sense of place & gravitas. Old oak. In magnum too.
First impression is of well-judged oak (85% new), giving both a precise tannin structure & a vanilla/cinnamon veneer to the sweet red fruit of 2014. Less arresting aromatically than 2013, but as sculpted & toned. Also in 1.5 & 3L.