Warwick Estate - Cabernet Sauvignon 'The First Lady' 2018

$23.00
Sale price

Regular price $23.00

Deep dark fruits dominate the nose initially with blackberry compote and black plums, and dark chocolate. Dark berries follow on to the palate with dried herbs, cassis and dark chocolate.

Pair with barbecued pork spare-ribs or grilled rib-eye steak.

--------THE PRODUCER--------

Warwick Estate

Warwick Estate is a high-end South African winery in the Stellenbosch region of South Africa. The Estate has a rich farming history dating back to 1771.

Then a fruit farm, Warwick only emerged on the forefront of South Africa’s wine scene when Stan and Norma Ratcliffe bought the estate in 1964 and started developing the land with an extensive focus on the classic Bordeaux varieties: Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Through determination and commitment, Norma Ratcliffe became one of the Cape’s first female winemakers – and one of its most illustrious wine personalities, whose legacy is immortalised in the Warwick “First Lady” range.

The first wine under the Warwick label was released in 1984, then named “La Femme Bleu” – “Blue Lady” as it is known today. Two years later, in 1986, the Warwick Trilogy – a three-varietal Bordeaux-style blend – was released and has since been recognised as a truly iconic wine, with many vintages adorning some of the greatest wine lists in the world. Throughout the years, Warwick’s wines have won many awards, firmly establishing the brand as a South African icon.

 

--------THE GRAPE--------

Cabernet Sauvignon

In the seventeenth century in southwestern France, an accidental breeding occurred between a red Cabernet Franc grape plant and a white sauvignon blanc grape plant and thus was born the most popular grape among American wine drinkers: Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cabernet Sauvignon is a red grape varietal known for its thick, durable skin, and the vine’s resistance to the elements. After the birth of the grape, the Cabernet Sauvignon varietal began to be adopted in parts of France by winemakers searching for more durable plants that were relatively easy to grow, and the grape found its champion in the region of Bordeaux.

It actually wasn’t proven that Cabernet Sauvignon was born from Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc until 1996 by wine researchers at UC Davis.

The Bordeaux winemakers loved the grape’s healthy level of  tannins, which meant the wine could evolve in the bottle for many years. They also determined that it responded incredibly well to spending time in oak, as the oak brought out beautiful new flavours. The result was a wine that was full-bodied with a medium-level acidity that was fantastic for drinking with food. As they started playing with the varietal, they began blending it with other grapes, such as merlot, and created the world’s most famous wine blend: the Bordeaux blend.

As the Bordeaux wine blend evolved into one of the world’s most famous and highly coveted wines, the Bordeaux brand spread across the globe, and with the press for Bordeaux went the Cabernet Sauvignon grape. As the name of the grape spread, and more people around the world began to grow it, many took to calling Cabernet Sauvignon the great colonizer, as it became the most widely planted grape globally, until Merlot overtook it in the nineties.

 

--------THE REGION--------

Stellenbosch

Stellenbosch is the leading quality region in South Africa. It is home to many of the most famous estates and many of the top wines. Generally speaking it is a red wine hub with Pinotage, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon at the helm, though recently more white wines are taking over.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not bitter but rather have refreshing acidity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are very fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not have tannins but have lots of fruity flavours nor do they have extremely high acidity.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami rich foods where by it will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are very fruity but also have higher sweetness.

Wines that are just a touch off-dry like many Gewurztraminer or Riesling work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you should consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or a Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help balance out not just the acidity but to cut down the perception of fattiness in the seafood. 

This is why when you are having a piece of red meat that is high in fat, like lamb, then you should pair it with a Pinot Noir instead of a Merlot as a Pinot Noir will have a higher acidity and will help to balance out the dish.

 

 

These rules will help you with starting to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that are what need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that work well with cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity through a Pinot Noir. 

Deep dark fruits dominate the nose initially with blackberry compote and black plums, and dark chocolate. Dark berries follow on to the palate with dried herbs, cassis and dark chocolate.

Pair with barbecued pork spare-ribs or grilled rib-eye steak.

--------THE PRODUCER--------

Warwick Estate

Warwick Estate is a high-end South African winery in the Stellenbosch region of South Africa. The Estate has a rich farming history dating back to 1771.

Then a fruit farm, Warwick only emerged on the forefront of South Africa’s wine scene when Stan and Norma Ratcliffe bought the estate in 1964 and started developing the land with an extensive focus on the classic Bordeaux varieties: Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Through determination and commitment, Norma Ratcliffe became one of the Cape’s first female winemakers – and one of its most illustrious wine personalities, whose legacy is immortalised in the Warwick “First Lady” range.

The first wine under the Warwick label was released in 1984, then named “La Femme Bleu” – “Blue Lady” as it is known today. Two years later, in 1986, the Warwick Trilogy – a three-varietal Bordeaux-style blend – was released and has since been recognised as a truly iconic wine, with many vintages adorning some of the greatest wine lists in the world. Throughout the years, Warwick’s wines have won many awards, firmly establishing the brand as a South African icon.

 

--------THE GRAPE--------

Cabernet Sauvignon

In the seventeenth century in southwestern France, an accidental breeding occurred between a red Cabernet Franc grape plant and a white sauvignon blanc grape plant and thus was born the most popular grape among American wine drinkers: Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cabernet Sauvignon is a red grape varietal known for its thick, durable skin, and the vine’s resistance to the elements. After the birth of the grape, the Cabernet Sauvignon varietal began to be adopted in parts of France by winemakers searching for more durable plants that were relatively easy to grow, and the grape found its champion in the region of Bordeaux.

It actually wasn’t proven that Cabernet Sauvignon was born from Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc until 1996 by wine researchers at UC Davis.

The Bordeaux winemakers loved the grape’s healthy level of  tannins, which meant the wine could evolve in the bottle for many years. They also determined that it responded incredibly well to spending time in oak, as the oak brought out beautiful new flavours. The result was a wine that was full-bodied with a medium-level acidity that was fantastic for drinking with food. As they started playing with the varietal, they began blending it with other grapes, such as merlot, and created the world’s most famous wine blend: the Bordeaux blend.

As the Bordeaux wine blend evolved into one of the world’s most famous and highly coveted wines, the Bordeaux brand spread across the globe, and with the press for Bordeaux went the Cabernet Sauvignon grape. As the name of the grape spread, and more people around the world began to grow it, many took to calling Cabernet Sauvignon the great colonizer, as it became the most widely planted grape globally, until Merlot overtook it in the nineties.

 

--------THE REGION--------

Stellenbosch

Stellenbosch is the leading quality region in South Africa. It is home to many of the most famous estates and many of the top wines. Generally speaking it is a red wine hub with Pinotage, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon at the helm, though recently more white wines are taking over.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not bitter but rather have refreshing acidity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are very fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not have tannins but have lots of fruity flavours nor do they have extremely high acidity.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami rich foods where by it will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are very fruity but also have higher sweetness.

Wines that are just a touch off-dry like many Gewurztraminer or Riesling work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you should consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or a Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help balance out not just the acidity but to cut down the perception of fattiness in the seafood. 

This is why when you are having a piece of red meat that is high in fat, like lamb, then you should pair it with a Pinot Noir instead of a Merlot as a Pinot Noir will have a higher acidity and will help to balance out the dish.

 

 

These rules will help you with starting to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that are what need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that work well with cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity through a Pinot Noir.