Vinification is the process that transforms the grapes into wine. The process of vinification differ from region to region, financial state of the winery and the grape types. The harvesting time and the type of oak used for aging are based on the region in which the wine grapes are grown.

Wine making process involves the following stages:

  • The first step in wine making process is Harvesting or Picking. Grapes should be harvested at the right time in order to make good wine. Harvesting can be done either mechanically or by hand.
  • The process of separating the grapes from the stems and cluster parts is called Destemming. Some of the wine makers keep some fragments of the stem to increase the wine tannin.
  • After destemming the grapes are crushed to extract the juice from the skin. This is done before the fermentation process begins. In the olden days bare feet is used to extract the grape juice, now a day machines like crushers are used.
  • Separation of grape juice and the skin is named as pressing. After crushing the grape juice will flow freely, selected wineries use pressers to make sure maximum juice is released.
  • Once the grapes are pressed they are introduced into the process of fermentation. During this process the grape juice are converted into alcoholic beverage. The yeast interacts with the sugar in the grape juice and converts them into ethanol and carbon dioxide.
  • Once the wine is purified and refined, they are preserved with sulfur dioxide or potassium sorbate. During the natural process of fermentation a minimum amount of sulfites are produced, but more is added for the use of commercial preservation.
  • Wines are aged for a particular amount of time to get more welcoming wine. Once after purification, the wines are moved to wooden barrels for aging. Metal vats, concrete vats and glass carboys are also used in some cases to increase the flavor.
  • After aging, the wines are bottled. During the process of bottling a final dose of sulfite is added to the wine to prevent it from uninvited fermentation in the bottle. The bottles are then sealed with cork and screw caps.

Top Pinotage wines to enjoy on International Pinotage Day...

The post 20 award-winning wines to celebrate International Pinotage Day appeared first on Decanter.


Top Pinotage wines to enjoy on International Pinotage Day...

The post 20 award-winning wines to celebrate International Pinotage Day appeared first on Decanter.

Pinotage, a cross between Cinsaut and Pinot Noir, is a red South African variety developed in 1924 by Professor Abraham Perold.

Largely ignored for half a century, South Africa’s signature variety began gaining recognition internationally in the late 1980s, but still remains predominantly grown and produced in South Africa.

Difficult to grow, hard to vinify and marked for a potential burnt rubber character, Pinotage is a variety that has its disparagers, but when produced well South Africa’s national variety displays a range of red and black fruits like plum, currants, cherry and blackberry, banana and herbaceous characters. It gains additional complexity when aged in oak with notes of smoke, spice and chocolate.


Learn more about Pinotage

Scroll down to see the top 20 Pinotage wines from DWWA 2020


Now in its sixth year, International Pinotage Day (celebrated on the second Saturday in October each year) aims to highlight this uniquely South African variety, and with results recently announced for the 2020 Decanter World Wine Awards, what better way to celebrate than with an award-winning Pinotage – tasted and assessed by some of the world’s top wine experts.

DWWA 2020 Regional Chair for South Africa Greg Sherwood MW says ‘South Africa, in my opinion, is making the most exciting wines of any New World country at the moment… South Africa’s time is most definitely now.’


Decanter Premium – Syrah vs Shiraz: 30 great buys from South Africa

Search all DWWA 2020 results from South Africa


Discover benchmark examples of Pinotage with these 90+point wines from the Decanter World Wine Awards…

For more information on International Pinotage Day and how to take part in events on the day, visit the Pinotage Association’s website here.

DWWA 2020: Top South African Pinotage

(select the wine of interest for wine details and stockists)

Survivor, Reserve Pinotage, Swartland 2017

Silver, 94 points
Intense dark fruit and sweet spice aromatic profile, cooked blackberry and dark cherries. Rich and full with mouth coating breadth.

Hazendal, Pinotage, Stellenbosch 2017

Silver, 93 points
Freshly baked forest fruit tart aromas plus a touch of orange peel. Freshness and elegance on the palate.

KWV, The Mentors Perold, Coastal Region 2017

Silver, 93 points
Gorgeous black cherry, cassis and coffee bean on the nose. Fine, elegant tannin with earthy complexity, fresh long finish.

Survivor, Pinotage, Swartland 2018

Silver, 93 points
Appealing nose of cherry yogurt with blackberry and mulberry flavours plus black tea. Touches of earth on the palate.

Wildekrans, Barrel Select Reserve Pinotage, Bot River, Walker Bay 2016

Silver, 93 points
Brooding nose of black plum, blackberry with a more exotic twist of pomegranate. Velvety texture with soft oak spice.

Painted Wolf, Guillermo Pinotage, Swartland 2018

Silver, 92 points
Dark, savoury plummy nose with earthy hints and spice. Dark fruit core, generous tannin and mineral finish.

Piekenierskloof Wines, Johan Van Zyl, Old Vine Pinotage, Piekenierskloof, Citrusdal Mountain 2018

Silver, 92 points
Nose of strawberry and stewed plums, spicy oak and touches of earth. Open tannin with impressive fruit concentration.

Definition, Pinotage, Voor Paardeberg, Paarl 2018

Silver, 91 points
Perfumed nose of bramble and cardamon backed by damson and dried fruit. Intense on the palate with a chewy feel.

Lievland, Bushvine Pinotage, Paarl 2018

Silver, 91 points
Lovely nose of mulberry, cherry with touches of cedar and black tea. Fresh on the palate with crunchy tannin.

Spier, 21 Gables Pinotage, Stellenbosch, South Africa, 2016

Silver, 91 points
Intense and attractive nose of black cherries, sweet spice and blueberry lift. Bursting fruit palate, crunchy tannin and smoky finish.

Asda, Extra Special Fairtrade Pinotage, Breedekloof 2019

Silver, 90 points
Delicate yet precise nose of strawberry, cherry and floral aromas. Round and fleshy texture with a generous spicy finish.

Cloof, Winemaker’s Selection Pinotage, Darling 2017

Silver, 90 points
Lifted aromatic nose of plummy fruit, mulberries and cocoa. Crunchy tannin with dried fruit character, savoury to the finish.

Drakenskloof, Pinotage, Western Cape 2019

Silver, 90 points
Lush and dense nose with black cherry lifted by blossom and violets. Full bodied and suave style with heady warmth.

Klein St., Pinotage, Western Cape 2019

Silver, 90 points
Brooding, dark aromas of black cherry and chocolate. Round and ripe on the palate with expressive fruit and structured finish.

KWV, The Mentors Pinotage, Coastal Region 2017

Silver, 90 points
Dense bramble nose with hints of smoke and spice. Succulent and supple in the mouth with creamy oak to finish.

Meerendal Wine Estate, The Heritage Block Pinotage, Cape Town 2016

Silver, 90 points
Aromatic nose with raspberry, stewed plums and sweet spiced oak. Earthy character, soft mouthfeel and a smoky finish.

Meinert, Printer’s Ink Pinotage, Stellenbosch 2017

Silver, 90 points
Deep nose of cooked black fruit with savoury spices. Flamboyant on the palate, generous ripe tannin and long finish.

Morrisons, Pinotage, Western Cape 2019

Silver, 90 points
Attractive nose of black and blueberry fruits and vanilla pod spice. Assertive tannin matched be dense black fruit and juicy acidity.

Morrisons, The Best Pinotage, Swartland 2018

Silver, 90 points
Intricate nose of blackberry, cherry and damson with touches of wild flower and polished wood. Sleek and juicy palate.

Riebeek, Cellars Collection Pinotage, Swartland 2018

Silver, 90 points
Attractive nose of blue and black berry spice, black cherry and a vanilla pod. Round and supple texture finishing fresh.


See all DWWA 2020 Pinotage results

Read more – South Africa: DWWA 2019 award-winning wines to drink now


Buy DWWA medal stickers

The post 20 award-winning wines to celebrate International Pinotage Day appeared first on Decanter.


Read full article on decanter.com


Each wine is unique. Soil, weather, geology, varietals, and the style of wine making, are all decisive yet variable factors that give each wine a unique character.
Each wine is unique. Soil, weather, geology, varietals, and the style of wine making, are all decisive yet variable factors that give each wine a unique character.
Winemakers all over the world are combining wine making traditions of millennia with innovative approaches and ideas, to address consumer demand for high quality products and a sustainable and healthy lifestyle.
Winemakers all over the world are combining wine making traditions of millennia with innovative approaches and ideas, to address consumer demand for high quality products and a sustainable and healthy lifestyle.

Laurel Gray Vineyards

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