In a nutshell: A rich, warming and layered Stellenbosch Cabernet from Journey's End Vineyards.
The lowdown: Handpicked and hand-sorted, then matured in a mix of predominately French new and used oak barrels for 16 months. There is a core of typical Cabernet Sauvignon blackcurrant cassis flavours backed up rich plums, a savouriness, white pepper and mixed spice notes. The tannins are velvety smooth and the acidity well balanced. A big but well judged wine with complexity and a long finish.
When to drink: This is a wine for big, full-on meals such as steak, roast beef or a big stew. A wine that will keep and change over the next few years.
Journey's End Vineyard is owned by the Gabb Family, originally from Shropshire in the UK. The Gabb family took control of this picturesque wine farm surrounded by 20 ha of gorgeous vineyards in 1995. By 2011 they had grown the estate to 120 ha. Journey's End Vineyard is truly a family affair with the initial investment made by Roger Gabb and now continued by his son Rollo after taking the helm in 2007.
The family's philosophy is of minimal intervention. The aim of which is to create top-quality, single vineyard and appellation wines that integrate the tension between remaining true to the terroir, and finding their unique expression of it. In a typical vintage, no more than 25,000 dozen bottles of estate wine are produced. Many of these regularly collect trophies on the international circuit.
The Schapenberg terroir has begun to draw a comparison with the likes of Bordeaux, thanks to its sea-facing slopes, excellent soils and the exceptional wine emerging from the general area.