Class act gets a mod­ern make-over

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - GOODDRINKING -

IT HAD been a while since I sam­pled Over­gaauw wines, so I wel­comed the chance to taste a trio of new vin­tages.

For me the name is still syn­onomous with Syl­vaner, a wine I have long savoured: Not only has Over­gaauw been mak­ing it for more than 40 years, but they are still the sole lo­cal pro­ducer.

To­day, fourth gen­er­a­tion David van Velden has taken over the pic­turesque cel­lar and put his stamp on the new vin­tages, adorned with at­trac­tive new la­bels.

He had two ob­jec­tives: to in­crease fresh­ness and fruit iden­tity in the reds and pro­duce mid-palate fruit and bal­ance in the whites.

The 2012 Over­gaauw chardon­nay (R84) is el­e­gant, dry, lightly wooded with cit­rus and some creami­ness. Crisp and en­joy­able.

The 2011 mer­lot ( R103) is medium bod­ied, with plenty of fruit and smooth tan­nins, a sure­fire win­ner with mer­lot fans. Fans of Por­tuguese cul­ti­vars will savour the 2012 Touriga na­cional (R80). It’s spicy, full bod­ied and juicy.

● The es­tate is open for tast­ing six days a week and most pub­lic hol­i­days. See www.over­

TRA­DI­TION MEETS IN­NO­VA­TION: The tast­ing cen­tre at the Over­gaauw es­tate in the Stel­len­boschk­loof.

FOURTH GEN­ER­A­TION: David van Velden re­spects legacy but in­tro­duces con­tem­po­rary style and tech­niques.

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