Two 90 point wine ratings from the Wine Advocate for the Bernard series

Tuesday, 29 January, 2013
Heidi Duminy
The Bernard Series Bush Vine Pinotage 2010 and Old Vine Chenin Blanc 2009 have been rated an outstanding 90 points each by Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.
“Stellar 90 point scores are great affirmation of the exceptional wines of which South Africa’s Pinotage and Chenin Blanc varietals are capable,” says Niel Groenewald, Winemaker of The Bernard Series. “This international endorsement is very encouraging after our long-term, steadfast vision for The Bernard Series from these vineyards, varietals and styles over the vintages. I am delighted that The Wine Advocate agrees that the complexity and character of both Pinotage and Chenin Blanc are universally worthy of these high scores.”

Both of these wines represent the quintessential innovative ethos entrenched by Bellingham’s founder, Bernard Podlashuk, inspiring the approach to the wines. Both wines were tasted and rated 90 points in December 2012.

The Bernard Series Bush Vine Pinotage 2010 is a contemporary rendition of South Africa’s unique varietal with tremendous complexity and balance thanks to its two specific bush vine origins. The Wine Advocate describes the wine as having “ripe, vanilla-y bouquet with touches of blueberry and strawberry fruit infused with cappuccino. The palate is medium-bodied with succulent ripe tannins suffused with crisp acidity and a nicely composed, dark chocolate-tinged finish. This is well crafted with good substance.”

Similarly, The Bernard Series Old Vine Chenin Blanc has a solid track record recently placing it amongst the top 10 performing white wines in South Africa over the last eight vintages. Described by The Wine Advocate as having “very good weight with light honeyed tones, orange zest and a touch of white pepper on the aftertaste. The nose begins to open with aeration and it ends up becoming a convincing, highly enjoyable Chenin Blanc.” This vintage shows the hallmarks of the cooler conditions of 2009 with a discreet mineral character drinking at its best now or within the next year.

“The success of the Chenin Blanc is an inextricable combination of the phenomenal quality grapes from some of the oldest bush vines in the Cape, along with an intimate understanding of the fruit from these sites and how best to translate the inherent character in the cellar,” says Groenewald. “I am particularly encouraged that the wines are well liked on both sides of the ocean, and there is so much more road to travel with these two varietals. The Bernard Series is poised to continue delivering to the highest international standards.”

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