Alheit Vineyards, Cartology 750ml 2018

South Africa, Western Cape
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Cartology is a vinous exploration of Cape heritage. It is intended to be a picture of the Cape, seen through the lens of her mature vineyards, in a given vintage. Therefore, the cuveé is composed of rare and extraordinary parcels of mature dryland bushvines. Naturally, the varieties used are also heritage varieties, namely Chenin blanc and Semillon. They have been planted in the Cape for centuries.

Tasting notes:
'Is this the best vintage of Cartology since the maiden 2011 release? I reckon so. Made from a blend of Chenin Blanc and 10% Semillon, spanning the Western Cape from Citrusdal Mountain to Faure, it's weighty yet ethereal, with lots of leesy intensity, subtle oak and pear and citrus fruit. 2020-28.' – Tim Atkin SA Special Report 2019, 95/100

'Consisting of 90% Chenin Blanc and 10% Semillon sourced from across the Western Cape, the nose shows a top note of hay before pear, peach and citrus plus just a hint of leesy complexity. On the palate, lovely fruit expression and zippy acidity before a long and salty finish. With an alcohol of 13%, it’s perhaps lighter bodied than some of its predecessors but hardly delicate or insubstantial. It’s poised, detailed and it moves really well in the mouth – the sample bottle that gave rise to this tasting note did not last long.' – Christian Eedes,, 93/100

'Drives home the point: weight and power are not the same thing. Here’s a wine with a moderate palate weight that has both intensity and power. The wine greets you warmly with the scent of ripe apples and citrus rind. A second whiff reveals something savoury, even nutty. The palate shows poise, suspended and still in the counterbalance of rushing elements – sweet saline and mineral. Very good persistence. Some richness but absolutely no puppy fat. Dry, cleansing finish.' – Chris Alheit, Winemaker

Winemakers notes:
'Cartology has become our staple offering. It serves as a poster child wine for our project (and I dare say for Cape heritage wines in general). In theory we should be able to make an excellent version pretty much every vintage. It’s the best possible introduction to our wines. As a rule, the Cartology parcels are dry farmed bushvines, with a minimum age of 30 years, although most are around 40 years old. We’re extremely picky about the parcels that are allowed to make this wine. To illustrate this point, it happens sometimes that even vineyards that feature regularly in Cartology are declassified if they have a mediocre vintage.' – Winemaker
More Information
Bottle Size750ml
CountrySouth Africa
RatingCE 93
Drink ToDrink or cellar
ProducerAlheit Vineyards
RegionWestern Cape
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AG: Antonio Galloni of  |  AM: Allen Meadows of  |  CE: Christian Eedes of  |  DEC: Decanter  |  GS: Greg Sherwood MW  |  JR:  |  NM: Neal Martin of OM: Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show  |  PG: Platter's Guide  |  TA: Tim Atkin MW  |  WA: Wine Advocate  |  WE: Wine Enthusiast  |  WS: Wine Spectator