Blending competition winner announced

by | Oct 21, 2019 | Article

Blaauwklippen Vineyards announced the winner of its 36th annual Blending Competition on Friday 18 October.

Guy McDonald the emcee and one of the judges of the competition, from Lydenburg Wynproewersgilde Herma Swanepoel, Jakkie Swanepoel, Brian Whitehorn, Gerda Whitehorn and Narina Cloete, winemaker of Blaauwklippen Vineyards.

This year, Lydenburg Wynproewersgild from Mpumalanga took top honours at the competition.

This competition celebrates taking the novelty of the blending process to wine clubs all over South Africa.

Narina Cloete, winemaker of Blaauwklippen Vineyards says the judges wanted an accessible wine, something easy to drink but wanted to challenge the contestants as well.

The judging took place in July and 77 wines were judged according to a 100 point system. A top eight was selected and then the top four finalists.

The top four finalists are Lyndenburg Wynproewersgild, SLVWG (Serious Lovers of Vines, Wines and Grapes), Thursday Club and Wingerd Vista.

This year, the wine clubs were challenged to create an accessible wine with the final blend including four wines namely: Zinfandel 2018, Merlot 2018, Shiraz 2018 and Petit Verdot 2018.

Pictured with the trophy is Jakkie Swanepoel of Lydenburg Wynproewersgild.

These four cultivars had to be used with no more than 50% of each component and a minimum of 5% of each component used.

The winning blend consisted of Zinfandel 2018 (48%), Merlot 2018 (32%), Shiraz 2018 (10%) and Petit Verdot 2018 (10%).

According to Guy McDonald, who was the emcee and member of the judging panel, this was the very last wine the judges tasted.

Gerda Whitehorn says Lydenburg Wynproewersgild aims to create a love for wine amongst its members along with the ambiance around the table.

“The club consists of about 30 members and come together on a monthly basis. Lydenburg is a very small town and the wine guild continues to grow,” she says.

An excited Jakkie Swanepoel of the winning club says this was its 24th year of participating and third time being in the top four. Swanepoel says the club made eight blends and its eighth blend won the competition.

“As one of our members said, food and wine go together and creates a wonderful ambiance. That’s why we feel maybe they could consider calling this blend the ambiance blend.”

The winning blend will be sold under the BBC label in a Magnum 1.5 litre bottle and the winning team will be recognised on the winning bottle label.

Jakkie Swanepoel talking about the winning blend.

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