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wines

After completing my first vintage in 2001, I had to come up with a name for the wine as I couldn’t pronounce the name of the farm Rhenosterkop (“rhino head” in English).

The granite outcrop of Paarl Mountain glistens black after the rains, making Black Pearl the perfect name for a wine produced on the slopes of the mountain. And yes, Black Pearl Wine preceded the pirate movies (although I would love to sail around the world with Jack Sparrow)!

All my wines have scored 90+ points on numerous occasions at the Decanter World Wine Awards and with wine critics such as Wine Enthusiast, Robert Parker and the Platter’s Guide.

This is my core range of 3 wines, and some years I will make a straight Shiraz, Mourvèdre or Grenache.

Cabernet
Cabernet Sauvignon
The Cabernet Sauvignon grapes come from Paarl and Swartland vineyards.

Ripe fruit is handpicked in 18kg crates and cooled to 10° Celsius (50° Fahrenheit) overnight before sorting, destemming and a light crush the following morning. Yeast is then added to the open tanks when the wine warms up to 15°C (59°F).

Once fermentation kicks in, I hand punch down the grape cap 3 times a day until fermentation nears its end. At this stage, I pump the free-run juice straight into 300 litre barrels and press the remaining skins in a traditional one ton basket press.

The wine is matured in French oak for a year. I believe that wine is made in the vineyard, and therefore I take a minimalist approach in the cellar. My aim is to produce a velvety, fruit forward wine that is delicious on release, but that will also age for a dozen more years.

The latest release is young, fresh, and exuberant. Chunky plum and dark fruit flavours with a creamy texture and a long, sappy, black-fruited finish.
Black Pearl Cabernet Sauvignon
Mischief Maker
The Mischief Maker
Made from Paarl and Swartland grapes, the Mischief Maker is a Shiraz dominated blend assembled each year with different proportions of Grenache and Mourvèdre.

It is hand-crafted in the same manner as the Cabernet and as with the Cabernet, I am trying to make wine as naturally as possible to showcase the fruit from the vineyard.

The Mischief Maker sports black savoury fruit, molasses, with a backbone of herbs. A ripe, unctuous generous palate, with high fruit intensity and great length.

We all have a mischievous friend that this wine is named after!
The Mischief Maker
Chenin Blanc
Chenin Blanc
The Black Pearl Chenin Blanc is grown in the Swartland region, close to Riebeek West.

The grapes are harvested by hand early in the morning. After destemming and a gentle crushing, the juice is cooled for natural settling.

Fermentation takes place with yeast which develops passionfruit characteristics and a clean, high aromatic intensity. After fermentation the wine is left on the lees (the dead yeast cells) for a few months to add to the mouthfeel.

The Chenin Blanc has a fine mineral nose with a citrus freshness. The palate has zesty acidity complimented by Granny Smith apple and subtle tropical fruit flavours.

Bright and focused with a crisp clean finish, this wine shows off the varietal characters of an unoaked Chenin from the Swartland.
Black Pearl Chenin Blanc