Established wine regions often carry an allegiance to their long history with great heritage, but every now and again you find a hidden pocket of beautiful wines that break away from that mould. Guided by fresh thinking and the desire to learn, the vineyards speckled along the Plett Winelands are creating their own traditions from scratch and this burgeoning ‘bubbly’ region has reason for celebration.
Arguably recognized as South Africa’s smallest wine growing region with only 58 hectares of vineyards, the area is producing amazing Methode Cap Classique wines (MCC) that are rivaling their older and more established challengers.
Hot on the heels of the more well established, Newstead Lund Family Vineyards in Plett have been showcasing the region with their many accolades. At the 2014 Michelangelo Awards, Newstead won a Gran D’or (double gold) for its first ever MCC Brut Chardonnay. In 2016 the estate won a second Gran D’or, this time for its Rosé bubbly. In 2017 Newstead won its third double gold for their second MCC Brut Chardonnay. In 2019 Newstead won a double gold for its 3rd MCC Brut Chardonnay, as well as a double gold for their third Rosé MCC.
For good measure, the Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay have also been awarded at previous Michelangelo Awards, and their Brut MCC Blanc de blanc scored 95 in the IWSC (International Wine and Spirits competition), one of three South African sparkling wines to be awarded gold. One of 500 wines to win Gold worldwide.
Just further down the Redford Road in the Crags, you will find the picturesque Kay & Monty Vineyards also at the base of the Crags Mountain range. Kay & Monty’s MCC is affectionately dubbed Champu and is a fresh and lively MCC. Their 2016 MCC Blanc de Blanc was grown in sand to loamy soil with good drainage, ideal for Chardonnay.
Their trellises run north to south for lengthened sun exposure to aid ripening. The 2016 season was an exceptionally hot and dry season which resulted in raging fires in the Crags area. While the fires did not directly affect their vines, the hot and dry conditions were a large contributor to the fruitiness of the vintage as grapes ripen more easily in warmer weather and therefore have a higher sugar content. This has created the sweeter and more tropical nose and fuller flavour than previous vintages. This MCC has a sweet tropical nose with hints of biscuit and pineapple.
They are a potential candidate, so watch their progress alongside Newstead when it comes to accolades for the region!
There is something to be said about boutique wine offerings, and in Plett that is what it’s all about. Each farm offers an intimate and special experience. You will find hands-on involvement from owners which provides a clear overview of the different welcoming styles and spaces and you will leave feeling excited and impressed by this little coastal wine region that serves up award-winning bubbles.
Plett Wine Farms currently open for business under Lockdown Level 2 regulations:
- Bramon Wine Estate open for tastings and sales (Mon – Thurs: 11h00 – 17h00)
- Kay & Monty Vineyards open for light lunches, tastings and sales (Thurs – Sun; 11h00 – 16h00)
- Lodestone Wine & Olives open for tastings and sales (Mon – Thurs; 11h00 – 16h00)
- Luka Vineyards: open for sales (Mon – Thurs; 09h00 – 17h00)
- Newstead Lund Family Vineyards open for tastings and sales (Mon – Thurs; 09h00 – 17h00)
- Packwood Country Estate open for tasting and sales (Mon – Thurs; 10h30 – 15h00)
- Plettenvale Wines open by appointment only (Mon – Thurs)
Visit www.plettwinelands.com for all contact details