“Better than winning the Pichon-Lalande trophy” said Andre van Rensburg, cellarmaster at Vergelegen on having his Vergelegen Sauvignon Blanc Reserve 2013 acclaimed as best Helderberg white at the Checkers Battle of die Berge festival at Muratie today.
No trophies. No certificates. But a listing at Checkers which Andre flagged as way more important than yet more bling for the display case. “Besides, I’ve stolen a Battle of die Berge glass and we’ll put it into the trophy cupboard at Vergelegen. We’d love to host the event next year and you should make some Battle of die Berge T-shirts. If not for this competition, Checkers would never have listed my Schaapenberg wine.” Wine competition history was made on Muratie this afternoon.
There were 29 entries from the Helderberg and 41 from the Simonsberg and the average score for Simonsberg red and whites was higher than the Helderberg while the reverse applied to wallet friendly (sub R80) wines. But the top scoring white, red and overall wine both came from the Helderberg. Which speaks to more extremes on the Helderberg but a better average performance for the Simonsberg. Something confirmed by Stellebosch academic Charl Theron who has studied show results by appellation where performance is dominated by the Simonsberg.
Wallet friendly wine
Winner: Vergenoegd Runner Duck Red 2011
Runner up: Lyngrove Reserve Shiraz/ Pinotage 2010
Winner: Vergelegen Sauvignon Blanc Reserve 2013 (best performing white and best wine overall)
Runner up: Ken Forrester Reserve Chenin Blanc (Old Vines) 2012
Winner: Alto Shiraz 2011 (best performing red overall – a particularly fitting result for a festival held on Muratie which was brought back into the Melck family by the late Ronnie Melck MD of Stellenbosch Farmers’ Winery, forerunner to the current marketers and co-owners Distell)
Runner up: Lyngrove Lattitude 2011
Wallet friendly wine
Winner: Glenelley Glass Collection Syrah 2010
Runner up: Remhoogte Chenin Blanc 2012
Winner: Delaire Graff Chardonnay 2012
Runner up: Simonsig Chenin Blanc Avec Chene 2010
Winner: Warwick Trilogy 2010
Runner up: Hoopenburg Integer Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
The Western Cape regional final of the Checkers Boerewors Competition coincided with Battle of die Berge and the event was MC’d by dashing Herman Lensing (above) who was such a good sport, he readily posed with some of the more exotic visitors to the fair.