This wine articulates the work ethic of Bruno and the commitment of Carlo Suter – the Swiss rooted Breedekloof farming family. Today, 8 vintages down the line, I’m releasing the new Mykoffer 2020 – a straight Breedekloof Cinsaut – with cherries and strawberries, it has a feminine elegance to it with a surprisingly intense personality – So with all the emotions connected to a first love, I present “My TASSENBERG”, “My TAS” – BLANKbottle Mykoffer 2019 – a suitcase full of memories.
As we move along in this adventure called life, we’re (hopefully) increasingly exposed to fine and fascinating wines. We forget quickly and the days of getting excited when opening a bottle of Tassenberg is long gone. So it was then that in February 1994 I walked into Western Cape Liquor Store in Stellenbosch and bought my first bottle of TAS for R3.50. In the (student) years to follow, I partook in a lot of Tassenberg drinking (to put it mildly).
All that drinking gave me ample opportunity for reflection and I came to the conclusion that I wasn’t particularly fond of the whole wine, but there was one flavour component in the wine which I loved. That flavour component reminded me of fresh strawberries – a sweet, green, wholesome sort of freshness.
In 1997 I completed a month-long harvest stint in the (then) capital city of Tassenberg – Eersterivier Wine Cellar, Stellenbosch. We literally made hundreds of thousands of litres of Tassenberg. This is where the light went on for me and I finally identified the grape which produces my mysterious fresh strawberry component. It was Cinsaut! Ever since then I’d had the dream of producing a Cinsaut that tastes exactly the way I would like to remember TAS. The first straight Cinsaut I bottled was in 2007 – a Wellington Cinsaut as part of the Educational Range. The wine was good but not exactly the style I was after.
Not long thereafter, I received a tip-off from a well-respected winemaker friend about a little Cinsaut vineyard located in the lesser-known Breedekloof Valley. At that stage, the grapes went to a big cooperative winery where it basically disappeared into cheap red blends. So I took the plunge and bought some grapes.
Cinsaut is known as a varietal which produces lots of grapes per hectare. Besides the fact that Cinsaut has huge bunches, it also has massive berries. You therefore have much less skin-versus-juice contact and therefore end up with a lighter coloured (red) wine. I had the grapes ferment in small open-top French oak barrels and aged it in the same barrels for 6 months. Thereafter the wine aged for another 6 months in clay amphora.
ALCOHOL (%): 13
RESIDUAL SUGAR (g/L): 1.06
TOTAL ACIDITY (g/L): 4.96PH: 4.01