Wine & Spirits

Wine & spirits: Sipping South Africa

Wine & Spirits

Wine & spirits: Sipping South Africa

Wine expert Angela Aiello explores the best of South Africa's offerings.

At the tip of the African continent where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet, is one of the world’s most wondrous and beautiful grape-growing regions: South Africa. With a Mediterranean climate, picturesque landscape, fascinating history and delicious wines, it’s definitely a place you should add to your travel bucket list. Most wineries are located in and around Cape Town, making it a must-visit city for wine lovers.

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Photography by Ryan Brook/TC Media

1 Chardonnay
What: This popular grape, planted all over the world, does especially well in South Africa.
Pairing: Drink it with your favourite fish.
Angela’s pick: Fleur Du Cap Chardonnay, $13.

2 Blended wines
What: South Africa offers some great examples of blends to sip and enjoy.
Pairing: Great with red meats and seafood.
Angela’s pick: The Wolftrap Viognier Chenin Blanc Grenache Blanc, $14.

3 Pinotage
What: Pinotage is a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault (locally once called Hermitage, hence the blended name). It’s unique to South Africa and known for its chocolate, leather, coffee and smoke characteristics.
Pairing: A fantastic choice for smoky barbecue flavours.
Angela’s pick: The 2012 Grinder Pinotage, $14.

4 Chenin Blanc
What: The signature white grape of South Africa, Chenin Blanc makes a crisp and refreshing wine that also ages very well. It can be made oaked or unoaked.
Pairing: Wonderful on its own or with seafood.
Angela’s pick: The Pavillion Chenin Blanc Viognier, $11.

5 Sauvignon Blanc

What: Although it’s grown in many places around the world, Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa tastes amazing and is very affordable.
Pairing: It’s the perfect refreshment to enjoy while entertaining outdoors.
Angela’s pick: Nederburg Winemaster’s Reserve Sauvignon Blanc, $12.


Lead photo courtesy of iStockphoto®.

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Wine & Spirits

Wine & spirits: Sipping South Africa