WINE OF THE MONTH- MAY

Before it gets too hot outside, I couldn’t resist highlighting a certain new world wine that has really impressed me on more than one occasion. A friend of mine who grew up in Botswana gave me a bottle of this to sample last year around the holidays, and insisted that I give it a try. I was blown away by this stunning example of Pinotage, a grape that all too often is poorly made and ends up tasting like liquid beef jerky. Recently I ran across it again at a tasting, and my notes compared well with my first experience. If you’re into new world wines, this one might be worth seeking out. It’s easily the best Pinotage that I’ve ever tasted, and it’s ready to drink now.

KANONKOP ESTATE PINOTAGE SIMONSBERG STELLENBOSCH 2004, 90 Points, $30, 800 cases imported

A heavy, complex mix of smoky meat, black and red currant fruit, graphite, leather and banana on the nose. Complex body of dark raspberry and blackberry, smoked meat, strong mocha, burnt tea and graphite above a nice dash of peppery spice. Long, chalky, minerally finish of red fruits and pepper, full and exciting, velvety and well-balanced.

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