A tale of two vineyards. This exceptional wine brings together two sites - 'Main Road' & 'Dignity' - both planted in the late 1990's, making these some of the oldest Cabernet Sauvignon vines in the Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. Beautiful notes of blackcurrant, red currant, graphite and a hint of tar, alongside smokey tobacco leaf and cedar. A gorgeous expression that's bold yet elegant, and certainly capable of ageing incredibly well. A great wine to snap up by the case and enjoy its development over the coming years.
Very much sui generis, this impressive Cabernet Sauvignon is a great wine to put into a blind tasting. Made with fruit from two single vineyards, it's youthful, stony, grippy and compact with considerable depth and intensity, fresh acidity, fine 20% new oak and inky damson and blackcurrant fruit.
Many questioned the choice of Cabernet Sauvignon for the Upper Hemel-en-Aarde, but Craig Wessels’ viticulture is impeccable, and the winemaking sympathetic. The result is intense and structured with powerful blackcurrant and berry fruits, supported by firm structure, with some savoury gravelly and ashy notes. This is powerful, concentrated but has freshness. Slightly drying finish is the only distraction. Layered and sturdy, and really good.
Restless River is definitely one to watch in South Africa. They've been quietly gaining a fiercely loyal following, thanks to their Burgundian-style Chardonnay and ultra-elegant Cabernet Sauvignon.
The project came to life in 2012, and is run by dynamic husband and wife team Craig and Anne Wessels. These two are the kind of people you want to have a drink with (preferably a glass of their own wines!). Anne was a popular model before getting into wine, and Craig previously had an uber successful career in digital production, whilst also racing motorbikes and flying helicopters around the Cape. Now they farm an amazing array of vines in the beautiful Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. These include some of the areas oldest Cabernet Sauvignon vines. They are people of many talents, but it's safe to say wine is their ultimate calling.
At Restless River, slow and steady wins the race. Everything is made with the utmost attention to detail, and no corners are cut in the pursuit of great winemaking. Everything is done by hand, from picking in the vineyards, to sorting fruit in the winery. 'Restless River is defined by its terroir, and Craig Wessels' thoughtful and careful winemaking allows it to be the star of the show.' These are future South African classics.
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