Monday, April 10, 2017

Tasting Mèthode Cape Classique with Charles Fox

We popped into Charles Fox's tasting room on Sunday morning and were treated to a tasting of their MCCs. This collection of classic Mèthode Champenois always impresses. The wines all rate 4½ stars in Platter
A display of magnums in the large tasting room. They currently have six hectares producing the grapes for the wine, three more will come 'on stream' next year. This will enable them to do a Non Vintage which will be mostly to supply hotels and restaurants
They have three Mèthode Cape Classique wines in the standard range. They are also one of the few  South African farms with Pinot Meunier. There is a line of elegance that runs through all the wines. We began with the Vintage Brut 2013; R240 on the farm. Clean apples and pears with a nice crispness. Hints of apricots on the end palate, this wine has an attractive age component. Their Champenois advisor is French Champagne maker Nicolas Follet
Charles Fox with his flagship 2012 Cipher Brut 
We were lucky enough to be able to taste this wine which is available on-line only until the end of April. Only then will it be released in the tasting room. R460. It is a big wine, bready brioche yeast, huge crispness and leanness with rich apple sauce, some nice chalk with a lasting memory of fragrant lemon. It had four years on the lees

Then we tasted the Vintage Brut Rosé from 2012, R250 on the farm. It is bready, slightly minty, sparkling raspberry juice, very pleasing. Lovely fruit, no noticeable sugar, just long raspberry & strawberry flavours at the end. A wine for celebrations, breakfasts and long lunches
Charles with his wife Zelda
Next, the 2013 Blanc de Blanc, R360 on the farm, usually our favourite style of bubble. It has brioche, jasmine and apple on the very sophisticated nose, and is lean and dry on the palate, showing so well. It is full of apple flavour and you are left with a lingering taste of green apples
The spectacular view from the tasting room balcony of the Elgin valley and mountains beyond

We also tasted Zelda’s "gummy bear juice", a red wine made from Pinot Noir. It is not being released under the Charles Fox name, but under his mother's surname, M C Furneaux. They have just received certification. It is low in alcohol (12%) and sulphur, almost organic. Dark garnet in colour, aged in older oak barrels and not normally available for tasting. There is incense wood, soft sweet berries, minerality, light easy drinking, more in the Mercurey style for us, uncomplicated
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