Cap Classique producers have until 22 July to submit their wines for this year’s Amorim Cap Classique Challenge, which takes place in a milestone year for its sponsors, international cork company Amorim. Founded in 1870 on the banks of the Douro River at Vila Nova de Gaia, Amorim this year celebrates its 150th anniversary as a producer of cork stoppers, the natural product recognised as the essential partner to sparkling and other wines.
The Cap Classique Challenge is the only competition dedicated exclusively to honouring the highly-esteemed South African category of bottle-fermented wines, one of the local industry’s leading premium wine categories. Amorim Cork SA, which is sponsoring the event for the 19th consecutive year, is the convenor of this unique wine competition in conjunction with the Cap Classique Producers Association.
At this year’s Cap Classique Challenge wines will be judged in the following categories: Blanc de Blancs, Rosé, Blended Brut, Demi-Sec and a Museum Class for wines including and before the 2012 vintage, the top-scoring wines in each category receiving a coveted Amorim Cap Classique Trophy. From last year’s Cap Classique Challenge, Museum Class entries are eligible for the Cap Classique trophy for Overall Winner.
According to Joaquim Sá, MD of Amorim SA, the Cap Classique Challenge has played a major role in making naturally fermented sparkling wines one of the leading categories in the South African wine industry.
“As proud sponsors for 19 years, Amorim has seen the dynamic evolution in quality, diversity in styles and winemaker commitment within this category,” he says. “The fizz in the tale, however, has been the way the South African public has embraced Cap Classique, allowing sales to flourish and to warrant the investments producers have made in the production of this style of wine.”
Sá says that partly due to Amorim’s involvement, there is an international awareness of the Cap Classique Challenge and this category of South African wines. “Amorim’s business of supplying wine cork closures has seen the company garner a world-wide presence in our 150 years of existence,” he says. “Due to the success of the Cap Classique Challenge, the profile it has created for the category and the quality of the wines – all under the Amorim banner – the Challenge is recognised throughout the world as a major and uniquely South African wine competition.”
Judging of this year’s Amorim Cap Classique Challenge will be from 18 to 20 August. Pieter Ferreira, chairman of the Cap Classique Association, says that due to the current Covid-19 pandemic, the judging process will be subjected to strictly enforced measures to ensure the safety of judges as well as all staff assisting with the three-days’ scrutinising of the entries.
“We are following the guidelines established by the South African National Wine Show Association. These will be strictly enforced,” he says. The guidelines ensure, inter alia, social distancing between judges, glass hygiene and minimum contact of surfaces and paper.
“This is a new world for us all, and we have to make certain adaptions,” says Ferreira. “Fortunately, the wine industry is no newcomer when it comes to adapting. We are confident this year’s Amorim Cap Classique Challenge will be another highlight of the year’s wine schedule and will honour the special milestone Amorim achieved this year.”
Complete information on entries can be found at: http://www.capclassique.co.za/challenge.html.