BLANKbottle 3.0


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BLANKbottle 3.0

This is a 6-pack and the case includes 3 bottles each of:

2020 Empire Strikes Back / Stellenbosch

The name refers to winemaker Pieter Walser’s feeling about Stellenbosch as the best winemaking region in SA, in response to the Swartland Revolution (great wines coming from a number of young winemakers out of this region). 

Winemaker Notes

The Empire Strikes Back 2018 - An all-STELLENBOSCH white blend of Verdelho from 2 different sites, Roussanne, Marsanne, Chardonnay, Chenin blanc and Viognier.

Today I'm standing up to defend the EMPIRE - STELLENBOSCH. Silently, she’s been re-aligning her troops and now strikes back at the Swartland to establish herself yet again as a formidable force. 

The Empire Strikes Back 2018 - An all-STELLENBOSCH white blend of Verdelho from 2 different sites, Roussanne, Marsanne, Chardonnay, Chenin blanc and Viognier.

Just for the record - I am a huge fan of Swartland white blends. The image of South African wines has changed dramatically over the past 10 years and the Swartland played a huge part in this. Their wines, especially the Rhône-style white blends are top notch. They are fun, young, energetic and unique and started to gain international fame.

Stellenbosch, however (where I studied winemaking), is the original EMPIRE of South African wine. Like most of us, I like to support the underdog, and in the case of white blends, the Empire became exactly that. So I created a white blend based on similar varieties - a combination that could give some of the Swartland white blends a go. The empire is therefore now striking back at the Swartland.

The label consists of two sections. On the left part of the label you will see a half star, which was the logo for the "Swartland Revolution". And on the right - stripes that represent a traditional and conservative EMPIRE.

2020 Pseudonym / Darling

Winemaker Notes

Pseudonym is made from a small 70 -year old vineyard. It grows in a little valley into the mountain in Darling - 100% Cinsaut.

There are two farms in Darling who share the same entrance. I buy grapes from Framer 1. He is a really good farmer and many years ago realised that the only way to make his business work is to farm top-quality grapes. He therefore removed all inferior high-production vineyards and was left with only old Bush vines with potential. He then sourced buyers from top wineries - guys and girls who could afford paying much more for his grapes and compensated him for the extra care given to these Old vines. Over the years he therefore created a niche market for himself.

His neighbour however (Farmer 2), farms for the big co-operative winery who doesn't pay as well as the smaller wineries. So, each time a branded vehicle entered their shared entrance, Farmer 2 made a note of the name of the winery who buys from his neighbour. He would then get into contact with the winery and try to sell them grapes as well. I don't have any branding on my vehicle though, so he couldn't track me down. One day, however, he phoned Farmer 1 and complained about the speed I was driving, obviously wanting to find out who I was. Farmer 1’s reply? “Oh, you mean the jam (preserve) maker from The Strand? He’s the one who buys all my left-over grapes once I’ve sold all my top stuff. He then pays me double what the others are paying and makes jam in The Strand (my home town).” I’m sure this kept Farmer 2 busy for a while.

My pseudonym: “Die konfytkoker van die Strand”, meaning “The jam maker from the Strand”.