The Pofadder is produced from an old vine Cinsaut vineyard block that takes it name from the serpentine shape of the Riebeek Mountain in the Swartland. Total production coming in at around 450 twelve packs. This stylistically reminds of a high end Beaujolais with its bright red fruit, light spice and strawberry, cherry and cranberry fruit. Medium bodied with a vein of acidity running through giving lift and freshness, this has an engaging suppleness with lovely fruit purity and focused mineral tinged, red fruit flavors. Dry and lingering with impressive clarity, as with all of the Eben Sadie’s wines there is a purity and vibrancy to the fruit that makes it stand out from most wines we try. Exceptional quality for the money, this is a beauty and should age nicely.
VINEYARD: Western side of the Kasteelberg Mountain in the Swartland
GRAPES : 100% Cinsault
SOILS: Slate and decomposed shale formations
AGEING POTENTIAL: 5 – 15 years
AVERAGE YIELD: 28 hl/ha
In the late 19th century, and much of the 20th, Cinsault was the workhorse red variety that played an undeclared role in some great red blends. It was an obvious candidate for inclusion in the Old Vine Series, although it poses many quality problems in the vineyard as well as the cellar, including the difficulty of keeping yields down and attaining perfect ripeness, plus its very oxidative character.
There were five vineyards considered – but it became clear that the block on the Riebeek Mountain in the Swartland was far above the rest in quality (the snakelike form of the mountain gave the wine its name).
After picking, careful sorting is vital to get rid of both under-ripe and over-ripe berries. The whole clusters are then placed in an old wooden open-top fermenter, with one or two punch-downs by foot each day to slowly release juice for fermentation. After a month on the skins the grapes are transferred by hand into a tiny basket press and pressed directly to an old wooden cask. The wine is bottled after a year or so, to retain the fruit and elegance of the wine and avoid any premature oxidation character.
Pofadder is by far the most challenging wine in the collection to work with.
Unfined and unfiltered – decanting recommended.
eParker: 95 Points
Platter: 5 Stars
95 pts Wine Advocate Issue #215 Oct 2014
The 2013 Old Vine Series Pofadder brings to mind estuarine scents of mudflats and seaweed on the nose – you can almost hear the yacht’s ringing chiming in the breeze. The palate is very harmonious with crisp red cherry fruit, fresh strawberry and a touch of white pepper over a lattice of fine tannins, charged with immense vivacity and energy on the finish. This is simply beautiful.
92 pts Wine Spectator Insider 11/12/14
Features a core of alluring raspberry and plum coulis flavors, lined with singed vanilla, cinnamon and anise notes before giving way to a silky, rooibos tea–infused finish. Very stylish. Cinsault. Drink now through 2017.