DE KRANS Wines is not only known for its award-winning port-style wines, but also its innovative approach to developing and producing new wines, typically in celebration of its unique Klein Karoo terroir.
Apart from the popular Premium Moscato range, De Krans has also shifted focus to producing exclusive, quality, boutique-style wines made from classic grape varieties, known as its Classic Varietal range. This range focuses on the classic varieties commonly found in South Africa, but with a twist when it comes to the winemaking process or technique in producing each wine. De Krans Wines has recently released its new vintages in all categories, with the range consisting of the Free-Run Chenin Blanc 2021, Wild Ferment Chardonnay 2021, Pinotage Rosé 2021 and Basket Press Cabernet Sauvignon 2020.
Contrary to popular belief that the Klein Karoo’s temperatures are too hot to produce quality white wines with a freshness, it is interesting and rather important to note that the average temperatures of Calitzdorp are in fact cooler than the Swartland and Paarl areas in most years during the growing season from September to early March. It is important to realise the focus should perhaps be more on the dry terroir as opposed to warmer temperatures – it is after all, similar to the Douro Valley in Portugal. The Calitzdorp terroir positively contributes to producing wines of classic grape varieties, as it adds to the depth of fruit character and complexity of the wines.
In producing the Free-Run Chenin Blanc, only the free run juice of the grapes is used, which is the first batch of juice after the initial destemming and crushing of the grapes without pressing the wine. This results in complex flavours of ripe tropical fruit, banana, guava, passion fruit and hints of lime. The wine has a well-rounded mouth feel, smooth structure and refreshing, balanced acidity, and pairs well with fresh snoek, sushi, braaied chicken, summer salads and pasta.
The Wild Ferment Chardonnay is an unwooded wine that garners delicious rich and creamy flavours from the long fermentation period. The wine has a beautiful light lime yellow colour, with citrus and butterscotch on the nose and lime, creamy butterscotch and grapefruit on the palate. It pairs well with most pasta and pizza, as well as fish such as tuna or yellowtail.
The Pinotage rosé has a beautiful light rose petal, blush pink colour with rose petal, candy floss and strawberries on the nose, and fine, red fruit on the palate. The wine has a lively, well balanced acidity and pairs well with summer salads, grilled cob, fish cakes and snoek pâté.
Basket Press Cabernet Sauvignon is a smooth, juicy and full-bodied wine that is great to enjoy on its own, yet pairs well with most pasta, pizza, and a traditional South African braai. While still showcasing the traditional Cabernet characteristics, the wine has a smooth tannin structure and was made with the intention to drink at an earlier age and not be matured for too long.
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PHOTO CREDIT: Tegan Smith Photography