The wine is named after the esteemed South African, Abraham Izak Perold, credited with the development of the Pinotage variety. He toured Europe extensively to explore international grape varieties, returning with some 177 examples! The collection still exists at the Welgevallen Experimental Farm of the Stellenbosch University.
However, the development of Pinotage was somewhat fortuitous, Abraham having left crossings of Pinot Noir and Cinsault in his garden while he was traveling. If it wasn't for young lecturer, Charlie Niehaus, who rescued the seedlings, this controversial variety may never have taken off!
The first wine was made in 1941 – incidentally, the same year as Abraham Perold died – at Elsenburg College, with the first commercial plantings established at Myrtle Grove, close to Somerset West. This particular wine is made from a cross section of (warmer sited) vineyards in Stellenbosch.
An original South African crossing of Pinot Noir and the Rhône variety Cinsault. This ugly duckling of a grape continues to divide opinion, but has a hard core of followers who firmly enjoy its "beautiful swan" credentials. Its versatility ensures it can be made into a full range of styles and qualities.
Drink now and over the next 18 months.
Created by Richard Kelley MW for importer Dreyfus Ashby.
Over the past 20 years, Richard Kelley MW has become one of the most respected authorities on South African wine. Between 1995 and 2002, he lived and worked in the Cape, witnessing the renaissance of the post-apartheid wine industry. Throughout this time, he established a healthy rapport with the great and the good of the local wine scene, affording him access to their distinguished cellars. Along the way he started to discover small parcels of wine and engaged some of the finest Cape winemakers in project work with him.
In Richard's words: “Abraham and the Heretics is something of a tongue-in-cheek challenge to Pinotage non-believers to accept the variety into their vinous lives”.
With its spicy edge and "grip" just right with mid week chilli con carne.