Below is a glass of the most important wine in SA for 2013: the winner of the Diners Club Winemaker of the Year competition. It is a non-Bordeaux blend chosen from 87 entries this morning by 8 experienced judges, tasting blind.
It was a clear winner, beating the second placed wine by 0.6 out of 20 points. Over 8 tasters, that is streets ahead and confirms a rare unanimity of the panel. There was no need for seeded players, second round tastings or other widely practised fiddles to get the “right result.” And none of the “did we miss anything, Pieter?” panel chairs often ask pourers who know what they’re pouring.
The result was a tour de force for blind tasting and throws even more question marks at the Old Mutual Trophy Show held at the same Grande Roche venue earlier this year. That controversial tourney was marred by allegations of cork taint yet at the Diners Club competition this morning, only two repours were requested from 87 entries with 90% of the bottles closed with a cork. Something for Standard Bank, owners of Diners Club, to tease Old Mutual about, methinks. Also no Diam-taint, the latest red herring from the anti-cork lobby, was detected.