Perfect balance sought in new Golden Triangle range

Wednesday, 24 October, 2012
Some claim – and Guy Webber of Stellenzicht is one of them – that the small area between the Stellenbosch and Helderberg mountains down to where the R44 runs between Stellenbosch and Somerset West, produces some of the very best wines in South Africa.
Forming a triangular shape, this prime wine-growing area that includes the Stellenzicht farm, has become known amongst aficionados as the Golden Triangle.

To celebrate the uniqueness of the area, the winery has decided to create stand-alone branding for four of its wines. These are a 2009 Shiraz, a Cabernet Sauvignon and a Pinotage, both from the 2010 vintage, and a 2012 Sauvignon Blanc.

“We’ve made wines, in the past, under the Golden Triangle name, but the upgraded new range is much more clearly defined, with an identity all its own,” says Guy, winemaker at Stellenzicht. “It is indeed intended as a tribute to the area.

“It is difficult to identify exactly what makes the area so special. There are, of course, a number of factors contributing to its uniqueness. The soils are relatively poor. That makes the vines put all their energy into producing fruit as opposed to foliage, and helps to create wine of considerable character. The yields are low, lower than the average for the Stellenbosch area which is, in turn, lower than that for the rest of the Winelands. Again, a low yield is, in my view, beneficial for the quality of the grapes we harvest.

“Add to that a range of other factors: the area’s closeness to False Bay and the benefit of its cooling breezes in summer, the great variation in height above sea level, in slopes and aspects, meso-climates produced by the folds and angles of the mountains. All of these contribute to the quality and complexity of the wines produced here.

“The old saying goes that the proof of the pudding is in the eating. When WINE magazine celebrated its tenth anniversary, it published a list of the 20 top producers its team had rated  during that time. Five of them were from this miniscule area.

“In my view, what all the wines from around here have in common is balance. That is why the name we have chosen refers to a triangle in mathematics which is in perfect balance in that its three angles are in a 2:2:1 proportion. The observant will recognise this symbol, known in mathematics as an isosceles triangle, as the one depicted on the labels of the new range.”

“This obsession with balance, the Golden Ratio, as found in nature and the greater world around us, has for centuries occupied mathematicians, philosophers and artists such as Leonardo da Vinci. The quest for perfect balance is also what motivated us in creating the four wines in our new series.

The revamped Golden Triangle range of wines will be available in stores countrywide from the end of October. They are expected to retail for around R50 for the Sauvignon Blanc and around R80 for the reds.

Guy Webber, winemaker
Guy Webber, winemaker

more news