Platter Guide 2011: 4½ stars
The Wine Advocate 2011: 90 points
Colour: Dark plum, concentrated centre and opaque to the edges.
Nose: Enticing with almonds, coffee and sweet caramel, and alluring sniffs of cassis and vanilla pods. Great freshness with hits of blackberry sweetness.
Palate: Elegant entry, very plush and immediately filling. Sweeter dark berry fruit very evident, which contributes well to balancing the minerality which adds a lot of weight.
This wine will really appreciate a bit of air up front. Restrained and sometimes quite closed at first. This already is a sign of age to come. The 2008 is pacing itself, holding firm to our beliefs that it will still be going in 10 years time.
36% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Franc, 19% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Petit Verdot
Most young bold Bordeaux blends pair well with something hearty. Big flavours abound, and team well with a prime piece of beef or lamb, accompanied by something creamy.
In The Vineyard
Following good winter rains, cooler temperatures delayed bud break and eventually harvest. This had good consequences for the wines as they produced great depth of fruit and elegant structures. 2008 will be remembered for its elegant wines.
Region: Helderberg ward
In The Cellar
100% Barrel maturation in 300 litre oak from French coopers, for 15 months. A small percentage of open grain complemented the mainly tight grain oak selection.
4888This is the first time that Morgenster has released its classic Bordeaux style blends in the third year after harvest. Previously the Estate released its wines in the fourth year. However winemaker Henry Kotzé points out that wine changes quite a bit from year three to year four, and releasing a year earlier offers the chance to savour the early vibrancy of the fruit in wines which have been crafted to be enjoyed for 20 years and beyond. This approach also showcases what Morgenster is achieving within the Schaapenberg microclimate.
The 2008 vintage will be remembered for elegant wines with silky fine tannins and classical fruit. As always this quality can be attributed to both viticulturist and winemaker who call on their skill, knowledge and experience to deal with challenges from Mother Nature at harvest.