Marks and reviews
The depth and the complexity of a Swartland red wine
Located in the Swartland region of South Africa, the Sadie Family estate was founded in 1999 by Eben Sadie and his brother and sister. After having travelled extensively in Europe, this passionate winegrower decided to revive the old vines of his native land while planting grape varieties from southern Europe adapted to the Mediterranean-like climate of the Cape. This atypical South African winemaker is today the charismatic face of the revival of quality South African wines. For more than two decades, his constant quest for excellent quality has been unparalleled and his wines are now sought after all over the world.
Columella 2020 is a Western Cape wine that stems from a blend from several vineyards in Paardeberg, Kasteelberg, Malmesbury and Piquetberg. The vines are planted on soils made up of granite, slate, gravel and sandstone.
This Swartland wine takes the name Columella in homage to Lucius Iunius Moderatus Columella, or just Columella, who was a Roman author on agriculture in the 1st century AD. His work, De re rustica, greatly impacted Eben Sadie when he studied Spanish in the library of Tarragona, as it gave him an overview of all the major problems in agriculture which are still true today.
Winemaking and ageing
Following the harvest, the grapes were sorted by hand into small crates. Fermentation took place spontaneously without additives in open concrete vats for about three weeks. Post-fermentation maceration lasted another three weeks. Pressing was done in a traditional basket press and the wine was transferred to barrels for malolactic fermentation. The wine was aged for 12 months on the lees in French oak barrels, of which only 5% were new, and then racked into tuns for a further year of maturation on the fine lees. After two years, the wine was bottled without fining or filtration.
Characteristics and tasting tips for Columella 2020 from Sadie Family
The nose develops bright notes of crushed red fruit which evolves into blueberry scents.
The palate entices with the purity of the fruit, its depth and the complexity of perfectly integrated tannins. The finish gives a tannic framework of great refinement.
This red South African wine can be laid down for 8 years minimum in order to reveal all its aromatic palette.