Wide River, Viognier, W.O. Robertson, South Africa, 2013
Robertson is about 100km east-north-east of Cape Town, straddling the Breede River Valley, which runs south-east, emptying into the cold Indian Ocean about 100km distant. The hot and dry climate is mitigated by the Breede, together with its access to moist cooling breezes from the cold waters of the Agulhas Current. Varied soils – sandy and alluvial, with limestone outcroppings. Chardonnay dominates whites, with some sauvignon blanc and others.
This wine: Varietal viognier, barrel fermented in small new French oak, screw cap closure, 14% abv, Weavers, £8 (2015)
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, deep intensity lemon, showing tears.
Nose: clean on the nose, medium (+) intensity, youthful, with aromas, as they come, of white peach and apricot, honeysuckle and gorse flower (delicate coconut-like), light honey, pineapple skin, ripe grapefruit pith, a whiff of new oak, toast and a spicy edge.
Palate: a dry wine, medium acidity, medium (+) alcohol, medium (+) body, a smooth lightly oily texture with a very low-level grip, medium (+) intensity, with flavours of toast, yellow peach and apricot, gorse flower (delicate coconut-like), over-ripe grapefruit, a touch of oak. A medium (+) length with a clean lightly flavoured stone fruit finish.
Quality: a very good quality wine, nicely balanced acidity with decent fruit intensity, some added complexity and body from use of new oak, with decent concentration, but not outstandingly so, following into the decent length.
Readiness for drinking/potential for ageing: drink now, unsuitable for ageing – a good balance now, with acid backbone, but concentration is lacking.