The Cap Classique Producers Association has re-positioned its marketing objectives to highlight the importance of time in the making of fine South African bubbly. The change occurs simultaneously to a drive for changes in local legislation governing the production of Cap Classique, and for which the CCPA are lobbying.
In broad terms, the law will ultimately make provision for at least two categories within the definition of Cap Classique that are based on the period the wine spends on the lees. This is a very exciting time for Cap Classique.
“This is an important differentiator because it recognises the additional investment producers make in the pursuit of higher quality,” says Pieter Ferreira, chairperson of the CCPA. “It is also the reason for our new messaging that Cap Classique is perfected by time.”
To this end, the CCPA’s new brand positioning statement declares: “Here in the unique winelands of the Cape, we know patience. We take our time to craft Cap Classique, the way it has been done for centuries. And we are rewarded with a magnificent sparkling wine that’s a timeless classic.”
CCPA members invite wine-lovers to discover the beautiful diversity of South Africa’s own bottle fermented sparkling wine when visiting the winelands. The producers represent 28 different geographical areas. Today, Cap Classique is South Africa’s fastest growing wine category and members have a tireless quest for producing ‘the perfect bubble’.
Only wines that satisfy strict regulations may be labelled as Cap Classique in South Africa.
In its making, wine destined to become Cap Classique remains in the same bottle, start to finish. It is here too that bubbles develop as a result of a second, natural fermentation. This phase as well as the length of time that the wine spends in contact with the lees, before its removal, introduce complexity, finesse and elegance to aroma and flavour. At a minimum, it takes nine months to produce a single bottle of Cap Classique.
The price of these wines is generally higher than standard sparkling wine, whose bubbles are inserted mechanically using CO2 gas, because the flavours and aromas that develop naturally, take longer to do so. The Cap Classique bottle is also specially designed to contain the pressure generated by the fermentation.
“Many consumers do not know the difference between sparkling wines and Cap Classique,” says Pieter. “Our new positioning puts time centre-stage as the key differentiator to other sparkling wines. Through a combined effort we would like to see the Cap Classique category, name and logo being recognised as a premium offering that is synonymous with top quality.”