Oldenburg Vineyards, Rondekop ‘Rhodium’ 2020
Oldenburg; a hot topic from a cool climate. Anyone who knows anything about South African wine should have Oldenburg fully on their radar – they are producing outrageously good wine and have, very arguably, the most beautiful tasting room to visit in the Cape. Oldenburg, situated in the Banghoek Valley of Stellenbosch, has one of the coolest microclimates in the region. A combination of a mountain amphitheatre, high altitude and cooling winds result in growing conditions about 5 degrees cooler than the rest of Stellenbosch.
Oldenburg’s ultra-premium Rondekop Series draws its name from; you guessed it… Rondekop, the iconic hill situated in the middle of the Oldenburg property. Whether it’s the single varietal Stone Axe Syrah, Per Se Cabernet Sauvignon or the Rhodium Bordeaux Blend – they are all a small selection of the best barrels coming off Rondekop.
Oldenburg’s proprietor – Adrian Van der Spuy – spent a large portion of his life working in the world of precious metals and the name of this wine is a homage to that. Rhodium is one of the world’s most expensive metals and is frequently used in top end jewellery manufacture – and 80% of the world’s supply is mined in South Africa. Fitting name.
Grapes were hand-picked and meticulously hand-sorted before destemming. Prior to fermentation the Cabernet Sauvignon was crushed, while the Cabernet Franc and Merlot were fermented as whole berries. After 5 days of cold soak, fermentation using wild yeast began. During fermentation 1 to 3 punchdowns were done per day for optimal extraction. Post fermentation, the wine underwent 18 months of maturation as well as malolactic conversion in French oak barrels (28% new).
Both red and black fruit jump out of the glass along with the tell-tale signs of Cab Franc – tea leaf and dried herbs. These mingle perfectly with a hint of baking spice and violet, adding to the allure of the wine. On the palate it is weighty and savoury with some grip from the fine grained tannin. The finish is seemingly endless. Built to last. World class.
Only 2 left in stock
Bordeaux Blend, Red Blend
Composition: 60% Cabernet Franc, 30% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon
Harvest: March 2020
Technical Data: Alc: 14.2%, RS: 2.9g/l, TA: 5.5g/l, pH: 3.57
Maturation: 18 months in 28% new 225L and 300L French oak barrels
The Rondekop Series wines represent a small selection of the best barrels – either single cultivar or a blend – from our iconic Rondekop hill. We believe there are 8 Natural Elements which uniquely impact our vineyards, creating quintessential wine producing conditions. At the centre of it all is our perfectly round hill, Rondekop: the 8th natural element.
Rhodium is a precious metal, used in the making of luxury jewellery. 80% of all Rhodium is mined in South Africa. Oldenburg’s proprietor – Adrian Van der spuy – has long been interested and involved in precious metals. To his mind, there is no better analogy for the incredible potential of South African wines – and specifically the wines of Rondekop.
The grapes were handpicked in small lugboxes and stored in a coolroom overnight. Grapes were destemmed and sorted meticulously by hand on a sorting table. The Cabernet Franc and Merlot were processed as whole berries, whilst the Cabernet Sauvignon was crushed. A cold soak was done for 4-5 days. Punch downs were done 1-3 times per day. The wine was racked twice during fermentation. The wines were barrel selected and blended 3 months prior to bottling, which occurred in November 2021.
The depth of flavour found on the Rhodium intensifies with every subsequent vintage. The wine displays a deep ruby hue in the glass. On the nose, you will find rhubarb and roses, alongside red cherries and raspberries. This delivers a stunning fruit spectrum. The palate adds a weighty, savoury element – with violets, lavender and grapefruit pith adding a seriousness to this wine. A beautiful finely-grained tannin structure and a racy acidity complement each other, adding a lengthy, lingering bitter-almond finish.
2020 was another exceptional harvest. The winter months saw good rainfall – only slightly less compared to the previous year. Spring brought ideal conditions, leading to even bud-break and homogenous shoot growth. The summer ripening period was consistent and moderate, and without heat spikes, bringing about uniform flavour development and phenolic ripeness in the grapes.
Bordeaux Blend, Red Blend
Beef Wellington or a classic Italian Melanzane.