South African wines keep betting and better … and it’s not just wine lovers around the world who think that, it’s an opinion shared by the experts too. UK guru Tim Atkin recently published a report that described 2015 and 2017 as two of the best ever harvests in the 35-year history of Cape winemaking.
As we’ve done for the last 30 years, South African Airways’ annual SA Wine List brings you the best of these wines. Together with the Michelangelo International Wine and Spirits Awards, we’ve curated the perfect wines to accompany the delicious, African-flavoured menus created for our Premium Class passengers by celebrity chefs Siba Mtongana and Chef Coco Reinharz.
The art of making fine wine requires that special combination of attention to detail, patience and the expertise that only experience brings – it’s a process you can enjoy aboard your SAA flights and one of the many ways we aim to make your journey with us a memorable one.
Each month, we change our Premium Class wine offerings and in March you can look forward to two new memorable red and white varietals.
The label has been sourcing its grapes from five core vineyards since 2003: from Elim, the southern-most wine growing area in South Africa; easterly vineyard sites high in the Swartberg mountains and from the Breede River Valley north of Cape Town, Flagtone’s owners describe themselves as winemaker-driven. First they do what is right for the grapes and the wine … and then worry about how to sell what they have created.
Flagstone Poetry Sauvignon Blanc Flavours of melon and passion fruit entice the nose, with the alluring tanginess of green figs and a zesty citrus twist enlightening the palate. A lovely, lingering aftertaste with a smooth, soft finish.
For more than half a century this label has produced wine from the fertile land in the Bonnievale Valley, allowing its winemakers a treasure chest of terroir potential. With the strict policy of only bottling the best, Bonnievale Wines has managed to establish a reputation for its consistent quality.
Bonnievale Chardonnay 2018 A well-rounded white wine, combining lingering wood and dried fruit flavours. A buttery, round mouthful of ripe tropical fruit flavours with a hint of citrus.
Since the estate was founded in 1916 by CL Back, Backsberg has remained true to its philosophy of producing wines not only with structure and finesse, but also with a high level of “drinkability”. The estate is now co-owned by third generation, Michael Back, and his son Simon Back who ensure that the winemaking style of Backsberg continues to be based on the principle that if you have not got it right in the vineyards, then you are not going to get it right in the cellar. And they certainly get it right in the cellar.
Situated in the heart of the Elgin Valley, between the Kogelberg and Hottentots Holland mountain ranges, this is South Africa’s coolest wine growing climate. First established in 2005, the label’s wines are a collaboration between six producers whose wines range from popular, large volume wines to acclaimed, small-run batches.
Elgin Vintners Syrah 2013 Upfront fruit-driven nose of luscious ripe red plums and a touch of perfume, with ripe red fruits – cranberry and red plum – on the palate, and some savoury notes well supported by a spicy core.
Also from the Michelangelo wine list, these superior wines have been selected to enhance your in-flight dining experience. This month, you can choose from the following.
Glen Carlou Unwooded Chardonnay 2018 Subtle green melon and lemon lime characters on the nose, with a palate of subtle peach, honey and a tang of green apples.
Kleine Rust Chenin Blanc/Sauvignon Blanc 2018 Guava, white peach and pear notes on the nose with a palate of luscious ripe tropical fruit with a hint of herbs, a lingering aftertaste of grapefruit and a zesty acidity.
Anura Symphony 2017 An elegant, fruit-driven blend with aromas of sweet cherry, white pepper and cloves on the nose. Silky tannins with well integrated oak flavours ensure a complex fruit-driven palate.
Balance Classic Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2017 Intense red hues, a well-structured velvety smooth wine with generous flavours of ripe berry and nut with a delightful hint of oak.