Thursday, October 18, 2018

Tasting Villion wines in Bot River

On the way back from the party and our overnight stay in Hemel and Aarde, we stopped off at Barton Wine estate, which we have been meaning to visit for a long time; it has been closed on the previous occasions we have tried. It is in the Bot River wine ward, but all is not what it seems. Cellarmaster viticulturist PJ Geyer has now left and owners Annie and Suzie Neill are living in the UK. There is still some Barton wine on the farm to taste and buy, however. The farm has been leased to Villion wines and they are about to renovate the tasting room. We had a very pleasant tasting of Villion wines with Chanel van der Berg and a tasting of the Barton Rosé. The Villion wines are made by Kobie Viljoen, previously winemaker at Gabriëlskloof, and all the grapes are bought in
Just to amuse you, we want you to know that this tasting was truly collaborative. Lynne's palate has been shot by two strong antibiotics (temporary, we hope) and John had a nasty cold, so he couldn't smell much. So words (nose) and music (flavour) are by us both! a first ever; concerto..
The line-up of the wines we tasted. Prices range from R150 to R200 a bottle. A creamy soft and sweet Chenin blanc from 34 year-old Bot River vines; lots of vanilla oak with peaches and naartjies. R190. The 2016 Chardonnay is lightly wooded, with a pretty golden nose, with peaches, sweet on entry with long flavours and gentle wooding. R180. The 2016 Blanc de Atlantic is a blend of 68% Viognier, 22% Chardonnay & 10% Bot River Chenin. Apricots, peaches and cream and soft wood on the nose, sweet and hot on the palate with 14.5% alcohol. Full of orange naartjie and yellow cling peach deliciousness. R170
The very young and fresh, with raspberries on the nose, Barton Rosé, from lightly pressed Pinot Noir is a bargain at R70 a bottle. Tastes of strawberries and cream, good for summer enjoyment. 12.5% alcohol
More of the Villion wines. The Pinot Noir has vanilla oak, rose petals and rich dark berry fruit on the nose. Savoury on the palate, with cooked strawberry and cola tonic. The 2016 Syrah was our favourite wine of the tasting. Savoury from the small amount of Mourvedre added, with violets, spice, dark cherry, and elegance on the big nose. There is also a soupçon of Viognier added and this comes across with the soft sweet fruit, lots of spice, ripe juicy black cherries, some red berries and black pepper and cinnamon which even Lynne could taste. R150. The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon R200 is classic Cabernet on the nose with cassis berries and green leaves and some violets. Warm cassis and vanilla, raspberry fruit, length, elegance and dark toasted wood on the end
The current tasting room at Barton, due for a revamp soon
The price list

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