Global Master status bestowed on Paul Clüver Chardonnay

Thursday, 7 December, 2023
Paul Clüver Family Wines
Paul Clüver Family Wines underscored its status as a pre-eminent Chardonnay winery with one Master accolade and 2 Gold medals at the Global Chardonnay Masters tasting.

Paul Clüver Family Wines in Elgin once again underscored its status as a pre-eminent Chardonnay winery in securing one Master accolade and two Gold medals at the annual Global Masters tasting for Chardonnay, an international showcase for wines made from the noble Burgundian variety.

At this year's Global Chardonnay Masters tasting, a top-achiever Masters award was presented to Paul Clüver Seven Flags Chardonnay 2022, with the Golds going to two of the Elgin winery's Estate Chardonnays, namely those from vintages 2020 and 2021.

Associated with leading international wine news-piece The Drinks Business, the Wine Masters take a distinct, new approach to the way wine is judged. Each competition showcases a key variety or style and is open to wines from anywhere in the world. This means that preconceived notions of the importance of location are pushed aside, allowing wines from across the globe to be judged purely on style and price.

Each tasting identifies the best examples of its grape category from all around the world and from every price bracket. Judging panels include Masters of Wine, Master Sommeliers and senior buyers. They award medals ranging from Bronze through to Gold and, for a handful of exceptional examples, the title of Master.

Paul Clüver Jnr, managing director of Paul Clüver Family Wines, says that besides the rigorous judging, the Global Masters competitions consider the price-points at which the entries are sold at in the UK market.

"Our Seven Flags 2022 garnered a top Masters accolade for wines priced at between £50 and £70, while the two Estate Chardonnays won gold in the £20 to £30 category," he says. "The importance of this is proof here that Cape Chardonnay can compete with international wines at premium and ultra-premium price-points, something the international consumer must be made aware of. Unfortunately, as a category South African wines are generally still bearing the image of being cheap-and-cheerful in the international wine marketplace. While Paul Clüver Family Wines is tremendously honoured at these accolades bestowed on Chardonnays in two of our ranges, we see the Global Masters results as being of great importance to the South African wine industry as they prove what we have known for a while now. And that is that Cape wines are of exceptional quality, warranting top-prices as they can compete with the best in the world."

Andries Burger, cellarmaster of Paul Clüver Family Wines, says the Global Masters awards vindicate Paul Clüver's belief in Elgin having the cool-climate terroir capable of making Chardonnays of global excellence.

"Ancient soils from Bokkeveld shale on mountain vineyards planted in the coolest viticulture region in South Africa has proven Elgin to be a world player in terms of delivering classic Chardonnay to the kind of quality the term 'greatness' can be attached," says Burger.

"The belief in this variety's ability to find a true home in Elgin began at Paul Clüver Family Wines in 1987 with the first Chardonnay plantings. Some of these initial vineyards are still harvested for our wines, ensuring our wines also bear the hallmark of legacy in the constant pursuit of excellence and distinction. It is once again a tremendous honour to have this recognised on the international stage."