Pepper and Spice and All Things Nice

Tuesday, 2 April, 2019
This week, when searching for another outstanding wine to feature, we found ourselves in South Africa, in Edgebaston vineyards. South Africa has a very diverse climate and soil types which enables the wineries to create top wines with tremendous personality.

Recently, Jancis Robinson (Master of Wine) had this to say - “South Africa is now well worth considering because the wines are seriously undervalued and a new wave of producers are making distinctive, age-worthy, appetising, definitively South African wines, both red and white” 

Edgebaston wines are made by David Finlayson on the Finlayson family vineyards in Stellenbosch. The Finlayson family is synonymous with modern era winemaking in the Western Cape region of South Africa, and one of the area's "First Families." Three generations of Finlayson’s have played a role in steering the Cape wine industry toward world wine recognition. The Finlayson family believes in quality and a holistic approach to the production of wines. They strive to farm the land, grow the grapes and make the wine in an environmentally friendly manner whilst ensuring that each wine is world class. The property has deep clay topsoil and shale sub-soils, unique to this particular part of Stellenbosch which produce wines with excellent structure, classic style and minerality.

The Finlayson family considers The Pepper Pot one of their “rock star” wines. Pepper and Spice and all things nice! The wine is a six-grape blend driven by Syrah, with grapes grown in the Stellenbosch region. It was created to show the grapes' fresh, fruity, and spice-driven flavors.  The phenomenal success of this wine is in its modern winemaking approach and the immediate pleasure it provides. The term "Pepper Pot" refers to Pepper Pot soup which started as an African stew. Like many African dishes, the exact ingredients varied depending on what was available. The idea to create a soup with the cheapest cuts of meat paired with starches, greens, and hot peppers is an old one. Enslaved people from West Africa carried this concept to the Caribbean and North America. Today, Pepper Pot soup is still popular in Jamaica and a few other Caribbean Islands.

Edgebaston "The Pepper Pot" 2016 - Stellenbosch, South Africa

91 Points - James Suckling
"Brambleberries, black peppers, orange rind and spice box. Medium body, lots of clear and linear fruit, a fine line of acidity and a pretty finish. A blend of 60% Syrah, 14% Carignan, 11% Tannat, 7% Mourvedre, 5% Cinsault and 3% Grenache. Drink now. Screw cap." 

91 Points - Vinous
"The 2016 The Pepper Pot has a light blackberry and cranberry bouquet that is nicely integrated with the oak (used and foudres). The palate is medium-bodied with sappy red berry fruit, a lovely grainy texture and a subtle gamy note that comes through on the finish. Delicious and utterly drinkable!" - Neil Martin