With Mother’s Day on Sunday, it was hard to ignore the relationship between the two new La Motte vintages released this week: 2021 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc and 2018 La Motte Cabernet Sauvignon. Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Franc are the parents of Cabernet Sauvignon and for thematic purposes, it suits to make Sauvignon Blanc the mother…
“… sauvignon blanc spread to the region around Bordeaux where it spontaneously crossed with cabernet franc, creating cabernet sauvignon sometime before the mid-1750s. (Until the parentage of cabernet sauvignon was discovered via DNA typing by Dr Carole Meredith and her PhD student, John Bowers, at the University of California, Davis in 1996, it was not thought that a red grape could have a white grape as a parent.)” (Read more)
After an elegant update to its classic packaging, both the 2018 La Motte Cabernet Sauvignon and 2021 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc promise to make a stylish statement on the dinner table.
2021 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc
While a popular aperitif-style wine, La Motte Sauvignon Blanc is also renowned for its elegance and for the 2021 vintage, cool climate grapes and the addition of 8% Semillon contribute complexity. 25% of the grapes used originate from the Cape South Coast, with another 25% from Franschhoek and 50% from Stellenbosch.
Each vineyard grows in its own macro climate and the distinctive grapes from each area all make a unique contribution to the character of this wine. With a late winter and cool summer, harvesting only started in February . (It was only the second time in 20 years that a harvest at La Motte did not start in January!) Grapes were harvested between 17 and 23 degrees Balling to capture natural acids and produce fuller, riper flavours. After fermentation (14 °C), the wine was left on the lees to enhance complexity before it was blended with the 8% Semillon.
A light straw in colour with a hint of green, the 2021 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc offers abundant flavours of Cape gooseberry and green apples, supported by tropical fruit such as pineapple and passionfruit as well as refreshing lemon. As a result of the cool growing season, acidity is crisp, yet beautifully balanced with ample body and good concentration. The palate is intense but lingers with a refreshing aftertaste.
With its natural acidity and a fine texture, this wine is refreshing as a glass on its own, but with enough complexity to be a versatile and delightful partner to food. Try it with seafood – from freshly grilled fish to more luxurious crayfish, salads – fresh or with grilled Mediterranean vegetables, often-challenging and spicy Asian flavours and of course, its natural partner, Goat’s cheese.
The 2021 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc is available online or at the cellar door for R89 per bottle. Download Tasting Sheet for 2021 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc
2018 La Motte Cabernet Sauvignon
La Motte Cabernet Sauvignon is known for its elegance and exceptional maturation potential. To contribute complexity to this elegant style, grapes from various origins and clones are used. For the 2018 vintage, 67% of the grapes originate from Stellenbosch vineyards planted in high-potential soils of granite and sandstone origin, while the remaining 33% of grapes are from Franschhoek vineyards in sandy soils, also of granite and sandstone origin.
Grapes from different blocks were fermented and matured separately. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks with malolactic fermentation partly in barrels. Before blending, the various components were matured for 16 months in 300-litre French oak barrels – 33% new, 33% second-fill and 34% older barrels. The Franschhoek grapes contribute berry fruit and a creamy texture while the Stellenbosch grapes ensure volume and a charming mintiness.
Thanks to its prominent minerality, firm tannins and flavourful intensity, this wine is a natural partner to lamb and beef, while it goes well with almost any other red meat. It makes for a beautiful combination with charred onions, root vegetables such as beetroot as well as hard herbs such as rosemary and thyme.
The 2021 La Motte Cabernet Sauvignon is available online or at the cellar door for R149 per bottle. Download Tasting Sheet for 2018 La Motte Cabernet Sauvignon