Flushed with success!
If wine scores were cards in a high-stakes game, this would be the poker equivalent of a flush.
The stakes don’t get any higher than in the annual release of Tim Atkin’s Special South African Report each September. Renowned Master of Wine, Tim Atkin, has become one of the most highly regarded in South Africa with his annual report eagerly anticipated – sometimes with trepidation, to see precisely which wines have received much coveted 90+ scores.
We are immensely proud that in the 2023 Special South African Report, Haute Cabrière received outstanding scores ranging from 90 to 95 for several of our wines! Of the seven wines from our three ranges that achieved these high ratings, the highest honour went to our Haute Collection Amphora Chardonnay, which proudly earned a remarkable score of 95 out of 100. This is a significant milestone for Haute Cabrière, as it’s the first of our wines to attain this sought-after achievement.
As for Tim Atkin, MW, he’s a highly esteemed figure in the wine world, known for his comprehensive knowledge and critical assessments of wine-producing areas globally. This year marks the 11th edition of his South African report, where he sampled an impressive 2,205 wines from 419 wineries. In the 2022 edition, six of our wines achieved 90+ scores, with four of them being Chardonnays. In this latest release, we’re thrilled to announce that seven of our wines earned 90+ scores, again with four of them being Chardonnays.
In the 2023 Report, our Old Vine Project Certified Chardonnays, unique to the Franschhoek Valley, led the way with the highest ratings. The 2022 vintage of our Haute Collection Amphora Chardonnay took the top spot with an impressive 95 points, while the same vintage of our Haute Collection Chardonnay received a score of 94. These Chardonnays, from old vines planted in 1983, differed in maturation methods, with the former aged in 450-litre terracotta amphora and the latter in a combination of oak barrels and amphora.
Two more wines from the 2022 vintage earned 93 points: our Haute Collection Pinot Noir, prized for its terroir characteristics, and our Haute Collection Amphora Semillon, a grape that continues to contribute to Franschhoek’s wine reputation.
Founded 40 years ago as a specialist Cap Classique producer, Haute Cabrière’s current cellar master, Tim Hoek, is delighted that our 2018 Pierre Jourdan Blanc de Blancs was awarded 92 points. This 100% Chardonnay Cap Classique is a bottle-fermented sparkling wine that spent five years on the lees.
Adding to our success, the newest addition to the Haute Cabrière Reserve range, the Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Réserve, achieved 91 points for the 2022 vintage, while the 2020 Haute Cabrière Arnim Family Réserve, an unusual Syrah – Pinot Noir blend, completed our poker-type flush with an impressive 90 points.
Haute Cabrière 2023 Tim Atkin Results
Wines made for life's moment
Tim Atkin: 95 Points
Amphorae (clay vessels) were used to age this wine. These vessels act as a traditional barrel but don’t add any flavours in the maturing of the wine. Only 650 bottles were released and each an expression of terroir.
Tim Atkin: 94 Points
Created from this old vineyard, aging and oak are introduced for a heavier, silkier wine with hints of butterscotch and almonds taking over the lighter & fruiter notes with more body and complex layers.
Tim Atkin: 93 Points
High density planting of 1m x 1m means the bunches are small, the berries equally so and the intensity of fruit and flavour rather phenomenal. Complex with new oak, not only adding an outstanding platform to showcase vintage but adding structure to ensure this wine impresses with each sip.
Tim Atkin: 90 Points
The results are a full-bodied blend where both varietals shine. These two very different personalities come together in a perfect union and celebration of what comes after that – family.
Tim Atkin: 91 Points
An evolution in our exploration of Chardonnay, find delicate orange blossoms and grapefruit on the nose, with citrus, melon and toasted notes on the palate supported by good structure and integrated oak. With a lively acidity, expect a fresh finish.
Tim Atkin: 91 Points
Created in the traditional French method of bottle fermentation known as Cap Classique in South Africa. Enjoy fresh lime and orange characteristics with hints of oak on the nose. The extended maturation period 60 months ensures a soft, complex palate and a fine mousse.
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