Scrounging around in my father-in-law’s cellar over the weekend, a solitary bottle of Vergenoegd Shiraz 1982, grown and made on the Stellenbosch estate and bottled by KWV. A neat 30 years on from vintage, it seemed as good a time as any to open it.
I confess I didn’t have very high hopes of it – the 1980s saw the advent of small oak barrels in South Africa and the resulting wines typically didn’t have sufficient fruit weight to carry all that new oak.
Surprise, surprise. It proved delicious – medium bodied in structure with the last vestiges of red fruit plus plenty of the savoury character which comes with development. Acidity was bright but not hard and the wine generally had a mellow softness about it. Score: 16/20.
As for winemaking, Platter’s editions of the mid-1980s advise that the wine would have been matured in large oak vats for three years…