This spring we take a moment to appreciate two incredible aspects of the new season, firstly the opportunity to drink rosé once again, and secondly the blossoming of three female producers: Kiara Scott, Mahalia Kotjane and Jolandie Fouché.
Kiara Scott, producer of Brookdale’s Mason Road Rosé – Serendipity, grew up in Mitchells Plain, a place she describes to have been riddled with gangsterism, drugs, alcohol abuse and its resultant violence. Despite the scepticism of her family, Kiara enrolled at Elsenburg Agricultural College where she was introduced to the Cape Winemakers Guild (CWG) Protégé Programme – a programme which enables newly graduated winemakers from previously disadvantaged backgrounds the opportunity to understudy some of South Africa’s leading winemakers. Having completed her studies, Kiara worked with David Nieuwoudt (Cederberg Wines), Charles Hopkins (De Grendel Estate) and Carl Van Der Merwe (DeMorgenzon), as well as internationally in the Rhône Valley, Sancerre, and Russian River Valley. Ultimately it was through Duncan Savage, Tim Rudd, and Adam Dirkse, that Kiara was tasked with the position of winemaker at Brookdale Estate. After quite some journey, it would appear that Kiara has found fulfilment in her work and is making her family proud.
Her Serendipity Rosé is a blend of 3 varietals – Syrah, Grenache Noir and Cinsault produced in Paarl. A vibrant salmon in colour, the nose brings forth notes of freshly picked cherry, candy floss and dragon fruit, supported on the palate by bruised strawberry with an undertone of confected grapefruit. The slight residual sugar on the finish, only adds to this wine’s moreish nature.
Mahalia Kotjane, the woman behind Lievland Vinyards’ Liefkoos Rosé, first took her interest in wine as result of a school project, whereby she stored crushed table grapes in a 750ml jar, and allowed them to ferment in a dark cupboard, watching as the jar filled with mist, and the substance began to bubble. Pursuing her fascination, she too enrolled at Elsenburg and became a member of the CWG Protégé programme. Struggling at first to adjust to speaking Afrikaans and to such a male-dominated environment, Mahalia claims it was her passion that pulled her through and has since developed her own wine brand, Three Quarter Wines. She also now holds the position of assistant winemaker at Stark Condé Wines.
Hailing from Stellenbosch, Mahalia’s Liefkoos Rosé comprises equal parts Syrah and Mourvèdre. Translating in English to “caress” this, blush-coloured wine offers notes of cherry blossom, jasmine and white rose petal complimented by pomegranate and ripe lemon peel on the palate. Its intoxicating fragrance, complex profile and generous finish easily seduces one into thoughts of a second glass.
Jolandie, having studied at Elsenburg College, went on to do a short stint in South Australia before returning to work with Dewald Heyns at Saronsberg, and finally beginning her own venture as Wolf & Woman Wines. Having grown up in the town of Malmsbury, it’s no wonder that Jolandie so successfully relies on instinct when it comes to her winemaking practices in the Swartland. Both fierce, and untamed in nature, she hopes that this wine connects the parallels between women and wolves.
Jolandie’s Wolf & Woman 100% Grenache Noir Rosé is as intriguing as the name suggests – while displaying an elegantly understated onion-skin colour, the nose at first demonstrates a Provençal oyster-shell salinity, though upon inspection introduces notes of grapefruit pith, white lily, pear drops and is reminiscent of rain on dry land at the end of a hot summer’s day. The palate further adds, pink lady apples, with a fresh acidity that suggests moderately underripe cranberry and red current. A truly conversational wine, that continues to open in the glass, perpetually offering new layers and nuances.
We’d like to offer you the opportunity to taste and compare each of these three rosés, as such, for the month of September, they will be available by the glass, with our team of sommeliers on call to guide you. We look forward to tasting with you soon in this more personal manner.