Wine of South Africa has become known around the world due to high quality, favorable climatic condition as well as the dedicated work of the winemakers. They truly love their craft and their land. Many collectors around the world appreciate the wines produced in South Africa, for their unique character.
History of Wines in South Africa
Over time, the areas planted with grapes began to expand. Nevertheless, the African wines have not caused yet the confidence in the world of collectors. This was due to the fact that the winemakers did not possess proper knowledge and offered so-called “illiterate” drinks.
Everything changed when a new Governor, Simon van der STEL, who was not only a connoisseur of the wine of nectar, but he was engaged in winemaking came to power. Thanks to him, new vineyards began to appear in the country. The Governor began to plant vines in his personal estate as well, producing quality red and white wine products. His products became famous not only in this country but abroad.
Despite the development of wine production, the quality is intoxicating potion had not reached the proper level. In this regard, during the 17th and 18th centuries Europe almost didn’t know about African winemaking. In the 19th century, the situation improved slightly.
The production of wine products in this area has increased from half a million liters per year to 4.5 million.
This happened after the British occupation of the Cape. For the Republic, it was the turning point. However, even then they are unable to enter the world market. Then came a period of decline, when the government ceased to control the planting of vines. Only at the beginning of the 20th century, the wine industry in South Africa gradually began to resume.
The reason for this was combining the best wine country in the United Cooperative of Winemakers in South Africa (KWV). The cooperative included more than four thousand producers from different areas of the country. KWV had a right to such actions: establishing quotas for the cultivation of grapes, fixing prices on products, issues about increasing the vineyards and the construction of new types of grapes, and so on. It was a big step on the path to world fame. Today, products of South Africa are known and appreciated around the world.
Wines Today in South Africa
Today, the total area of Africa is occupied by the grape plantations. It is more than 110 thousand hectares. Annually, the country produces about nine billion hectoliters. Undoubtedly, such achievements of South Africa were more than one year and owed their success to the following factors: local soil and favorable climate.
A new stage of the revival of winemaking happened in the mid-50-ies of the twentieth century. During this period, winemakers began to use the technology of cold fermentation, which is reflected in the appearance of new aromatic alcohols.
In 1973, South Africa has implemented a system of Wine Origin, under which a wine is determined by its origin. Despite the fact that this classification was fairly simple, according to the Europeans, it has become possible to control the production of wine. In addition, customers gave preference to certified products, it has also yielded results. Already in 1993, the country was ahead of Chile and New Zealand in terms of supply in the UK. Winemakers today are successfully using the unique microclimate and rich South African soil for the production of very good drinks.
Today in South Africa there are thirteen officially registered wine-growing areas. The most significant for the country are Worcester, Stellenbosch, Paarl, and Robertson.
A variety of new grape varieties contributes to the production of a large number of different African wines. Eighty percent of all grape nectars, manufactured in South Africa, given to white varieties, which can be herbaceous, tart, fragrant, sweet, etc. Popular all over the world is the African variety is Chenin Blanc, which is about thirty percent of the total area of all plantations. South Africa is also famous for quality table wines, featuring not only distinctive flavor but also low price.
Nowadays, the winemakers are paying great attention to the construction of Chardonnay, which proved to be in Africa. The wine producers also increase the area of plantations reserved for the Riesling grape. In this country, it has a slightly different taste than, for example, in Germany. Sweet types of Riesling are already known to many connoisseurs of white varieties. From red grapes, which differ by a rich and fruity taste, the leaders are Cabernet Sauvignon – elegantly gives notes of blackcurrant, Merlot, Pinot Noir – nicely complemented by the scent of strawberries.
The famous South African Shiraz
The wine Shiraz South Africa is also successfully made, it also refers to the red varieties. Pinotage is considered the hallmark of winemaking in South Africa. In addition, the fortified wine such as, for example, Jeropiga, known for its unique flavor characteristics. We offer a general list of the most common grape varieties in South Africa.
White wines – Chardonnay is probably the most famous dry white wine around the world.
Chenin blanc – these are grapes produce a wide range of wines, from dry to dessert, Colombard – these drinks present a distinctive acidity and tropical fruit flavor, they are often served together with seafood, Rhine Riesling – is of German origin, has a complex and pleasant taste, Cape Riesling – is a memorable honey aroma, Sauvignon blanc is gaining in popularity with each passing year more and more.
Red wines: Cabernet Sauvignon originates from Bordeaux is considered one of the best red varieties. It is often blended with Merlot and Cabernet Franc. As a result of the aging process in oak barrels, intoxicating potion acquires a pleasant aroma of cedar and currant.
Cabernet franc is usually used to blend with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot is very aromatic, but softer than Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage is a unique grape that is received as the result of crossing Pinot noir and Cinsaut, has a rich fruity, Pinot noir – has unique notes of ripe cherry, Shiraz – has a mild flavor and chocolate flavor. Of course, this is not a complete list produced in South Africa grape production, as this country entered the top 10 world leaders in wine production.
It produces more than ten million hectoliters wine of nectar per year, and it accounted for three percent of total production of this alcoholic beverage in the world.
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