The Helderberg, known as a premium red wine area, has the advantage of cooling breezes blowing in from False Bay in the afternoons, ameliorating the heat in the vineyard. This allows for longer hanging time which results in greater flavour and complexity in the resulting wine.
Pinot Noir is unfairly, in my view, called the heartbreak grape. There are many who make a great success of Pinot Noir, a grape which perhaps reflects its place better than many. Thick skinned and usually delicately coloured, the wine is a great joy. The Peter Falke Pinot Noir 2015 is a perfect summer red wine, especially lightly chilled. It is after all the wine of Coq au Vin and Beef Bourguignon and other Burgundian delights.
On Groenvlei, Werner Schrenk the GM and Winemaker and his team apply strict bunch selection when harvesting which is followed with berry selection in the cellar before the fermentation processes begin. This is to remove what winemakers amusingly call MOG, material other than grapes, stems, dried leaves and also raisined or damaged berries.
Whole berry fermentation takes place in an open topped wooden fermenter. Regular punch downs remove colour and the soft tannins for which Pinot Noir is known. After both alcoholic and malolactic fermentation have taken place, the wine is pressed and then matures for a period of 14 months in 225 litre French oak barrels before being prepared for bottling.
It looks like
Bottled under a cork closure in a Burgundy shaped bottle with a strong PF label. In the glass a gem bright translucent ruby which pales to garnet at the rim.
It smells like
Cherries and berries, rhubarb and pomegranate arils. Undertow of oak and its concomitant spices.
It tastes like
Fat sappy cherries and strawberries. Lovely entry following on to the fulsome mid palate and a lengthy dry fruited ending.
It’s good with
As I said, this is the wine of two of the most famous Burgundian dishes. Do chill it for about 30 minutes or so for maximum enjoyment. Good with sashimi, sushi and seared tuna. Justine Wall’s Beef Broth Risotto with Roasted Tomatoes is a great match. Click here for her recipe.