Ernie Els Big Easy Red Blend 2016

Challenging conditions led to a reduced wine grape crop for South African producers in 2016, but grapes were healthy and concentrated flavours promise good wines.  The weather was very warm, especially from the end of October towards the end of January, which restricted the growth and constituted lower bunch masses and smaller berries. However, the dry conditions led to the vineyards and grapes being very healthy overall. Smaller berries led to more concentrated colour and flavour on the positive side and good wines are expected from the 2016 harvest. Good reserves were accumulated during the post-harvest period (April and May), after which leaf fall occurred mostly at the right time.  The winter started off late in most of the regions but the weather conditions were cold enough to break dormancy.  Spring came on time and the weather conditions were ideal which led to good, even bud burst.   The harvest period started a week early due to the warmer weather and it ended about two weeks earlier. The wines from the 2016 vintage appear astoundingly good, with great structure and good flavours.

  • Tasting Notes

    The sublime and lively 2016 vintage shines through in perhaps the best Big Easy yet. A melange of ripe Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon is layered with waves of Grenache, Cinsaut, Mourvèdre and a touch of Viognier. Quite perfumed and fittingly complex, the palate is lined with chocolate, spice and confectionary cherries. A peppery nuance adds further character, all framed by a fine structure and juicy core. Ready to drink, its long chalky finish will assist its 5 years ageing potential.

  • Technical Analysis

    Alc. 14.05% By Vol.
    R.S. 3.7 g/l
    T.A. 5.9g/l
    pH 3.61

  • Blend Information

    Shiraz 60%
    Cabernet Sauvignon 20%
    Grenache 5%
    Mourvèdre 3%
    Cinsaut 7%
    Viognier 5%

  • In The Vineyard

    The Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Mourvèdre and Viognier were sourced from the Helderberg region within the Stellenbosch appellation. Cinsaut was obtained from various sites in Stellenbosch as well. Grenache was purchased from both Wellington and Stellenbosch vineyards.

  • About The Harvest

    March & April 2016.  25.5° Brix average sugar at harvest