KWV Tribute wine shines at Cape Blend contest

Wednesday, 21 November, 2012
Smart Communications
It was a fitting tribute to the father of the South African home-grown wine grape variety of Pinotage, that a wine made in his honour, by KWV, was named this week as one of only three champions in the 2012 Perold Absa Cape Blend competition.
The Perold Tributum 2010 was singled out by competition organisers, the Pinotage Association, as a wine that displays “characteristics so uniquely distinctive that it could have a meaningful impact on the international wine market to the benefit of South Africa”.
Significantly, the Perold Tributum 2010 was the wine to launch the Perold range, crafted to be an icon in the KWV portfolio. The unique Tributum Cape Blend – a first in the history of KWV – was made in a classic style, showcasing the best of Pinotage’s vibrant fruit aromas and silky tannins.
“Naturally, we’re delighted to be able to produce such outstanding wines such as the Perold Tributum 2010, which reached the pinnacle of the Winemakers Choice Awards this year too,” said KWV chief winemaker Richard Rowe. “But it’s particularly special that KWV’s homage to South African wine legend Abraham Perold has received this acknowledgement.”
Professor Abraham Perold was KWV chief oenologist from 1928 until his death thirteen years later. Recognised as the father of the Pinotage varietal, he is considered a pioneer of South African viticulture. Prof Perold dedicated his life and his genius as a master of wine to influence every aspect of wine production, setting a standard that continues to reverberate through KWV wines today.
The wider South African wine industry embraced the new varietal when it was first established, although for many years it carried the stigma of a second-class variety. “This has changed thanks to Pinotage ambassadors such as Beyers Truter and work done by the Pinotage Association to highlight excellence among producers,” said Richard Rowe.
“As an Australian winemaker I’m often asked for my feelings about Pinotage and I have to admit that I’ve reformed my opinion on this expressive and distinct varietal.”
The achievements of the Perold Tributum 2010 have re-affirmed KWVs strength in Pinotage. The winemaking team’s efforts with the varietal have been rewarded and earned titles including the inclusion of KWV wines among the annual Absa Pinotage Top 10.
The Perold Tributum 2010 itself emerged as a flat-out favourite in a recent internal KWV benchmark tasting. The tasting is a regular practice in which sales, marketing and winemaking divisions provide blind assessments of how KWV wines stand up to competition. From a line-up of 19 wines - some of them triple the price of the Perold Tributum 2010 - this wine was the unanimous victor.
Its popularity is anticipated to continue considering future developments for the Perold range which includes the launch of the Shiraz-based Insignia.
The Perold Absa Cape Blend competition was launched in 2011 for the advancement and promotion of a red blended wine of which Pinotage constitutes a significant component. The aim of the annual competition is to identify three excellent Cape Blend wines.
The presentation of the 2012 Perold Absa Cape Blend Competition took place in the KWV Sensorium, the new art and wine exhibition venue at KWV’s head office in Paarl. Representing KWV’s winemaking team was Richard Rowe and winemaker Johann Fourie.