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The wines being made in South Africa are pretty exciting to taste! I already knew how good the Chenin Blancs were but I had not tasted a Pinotage that I had liked until I attended a seminar entitled South Africa Redefined. Any preconceived ideas about this old world meets new world wine region need to be thrown out the window. Time to meet some of the winemakers focused on site-specific, terroir-driven wines that showcase what South Africa has to offer, as I wrote about in the Napa Valley Register, and am sharing here. What types of wines do you think come from South Africa? Perhaps it is Pinotage or even Chenin Blanc. Or perhaps it is bulk wine, inexpensive wine or wine with animal labels.
South Africa has a 400-year-old history of making wine and while it may be “old-world,” South Africa is in many ways “new world.”
Twenty years ago, there were 300 wine producers in South Africa. Today there are approximately 750 producers. Many of these producers are focusing on specific sites to make terroir-driven wines. They are what is driving South Africa’s wine industry today and are redefining any preconceived ideas we may have.
With a long history of winemaking in South Africa, it is odd to think of South Africa as also New World. But, in many way, South African wines are new to many of us in the US. That said, we will see more and more of them as imports have been growing. So, here is a little taste of what you might find from South Africa, which I wrote about in the Napa Valley Register and am sharing here. South Africa has been producing wine for more than 350 years. It is one of the most prominent wine producing countries in the southern hemisphere and is the ninth-largest producer of wine in the world.
One can think of South African wine as the Old World meeting the New World. Despite is long history, South African wines have only recently begun to become more prevalent in the U.S., with double-digit volume growth in the past few years.