Krone, Kaaimansgat Blanc de Blancs 750ml 2016

South Africa, Kaaimansgat
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Rudiger Gretschel, the chief winemaker at Krone Méthode Cap Classique house, aims for the stars with the release of their new flagship MCC. After many visits to Champagne, Rudiger decided to focus on a single-vineyard cuvée, cast in the mould of Grower Champagne over a Grande Marque-style blend. The 2016 Krone Kaaimansgat Blanc de Blancs reflects this incredible Elandskloof vineyard, lying at 700m above sea level, near Villiersdorp. The continental climate and high altitude allow the grapes to ripen later and retain a razor-sharp acidity.

Only 3,000 bottles of this lean, pure-fruited, limey style of extra-brut MCC were produced in 2016. It was aged for 3 years on the lees without malolactic and indeed does show more of a visceral, rather than opulent, character. It is elegant and fine-moussed with a nice balance of savouriness and minerality.

Tasting notes:
'At R500 a bottle, the Kaaimansgat Blanc de Blancs 2016 is the top of the range offering from Méthode Cap Classique dedicated cellar Krone. Grapes from Elandskloof situated at 700m above sea level, the wine was left on the lees for 36 months before disgorgement. The nose shows a pronounced apple character to go with hints of brioche and almond while the palate is lean and steely with a fine mousse. It’s rather an extreme rendition which will divide opinion – I happen to like it.' – Christian Eedes,, 90/100

'Pale gold. Aromas of mandarin peel and the distinct citrus-floral scent of verbena develop gradually into classic white-fruited chardonnay elegance. Cool, pure pink lady apples evolve on the palate edged with a flinty finish, as if cut by a steel knife. The precise, taut nature of the wine expresses the character of the vintage—a steely framework to support its full, soft mousse along a grain of toast with hints of oatmeal in the background. With its defined, linear acidity this Blanc de Blancs is restrained in its youth and will develop further in the bottle, becoming more biscuity as it ages.' – Winemaker

Winemakers notes:
The making of vintage-only Krone MCC is directed by nature: from soil to vine to bottle. Our winemaking team channels the rain, the sun, the wind into structure, complexity and balance—and seals it all with a cork. The site-specific rocky soils of Tulbagh are like nowhere else in the Cape Winelands. This is our bedrock for making great Cap Classique. Traditional grape varieties (Chardonnay & Pinot Noir) are picked early in the season and are night-harvested under the light of the stars.

These methods help the grapes to retain a high natural acidity and low sugar content. The night-harvested grapes are then whole-bunch pressed. The grapes are also pressed quickly to preserve the aromatics as well as the clarity of the juice. Only free-run juice is used. Each grape variety is fermented individually in tanks and the first fermentation produces a low-alcohol base-wine. This fermentation lasts for a period of approximately four months, once complete the different base wine batches are blended and bottled. Krone MCC is made in classic bottle-fermented style with maturation on the lees in our underground cellar.

More Information
Bottle Size 750ml
Style Sparkling
Country South Africa
Rating CE 90
Drink To Drink or cellar
Price R500.00
Producer Krone
Region Kaaimansgat
Variety Chardonnay
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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  |  ST: Stephen Tanzer of  |  TA: Tim Atkin MW  |  VIN:  |  WA: Wine Advocate  |  WE: Wine Enthusiast  |  WM: Report  |  WS: Wine Spectator