There’s myriad wine-related quotes on the Internet, some of which are so famous they have found their way in to people’s homes and on to their walls and, since the conception of social media, some have become the go-to captions for social media posts. However, no quote about wine – and, indeed, the deeper meaning of life – rings as true as Brazilian novelist Paulo Coelho’s: “All wines should be tasted; some should only be sipped, but with others, drink the whole bottle.”
Durbanville Hills Winery recently launched their Cape Portrait wines, a range inspired by Cape Town and celebrating the essence of the Mother City’s diverse and creative lifestyle. On a windy day in the picturesque Durbanville Wine Valley, we were invited to a taste of not only the duo of red and white blends, but also some of the varieties these uniquely blended wines comprise of.
Containing 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Shiraz, 24% Merlot, and four% Petit Verdot, the red blend provides scents of berry fruit with hints prune, cinnamon and black pepper. Although ruby red in colour, the Cape Portrait red blend is approachable, soft. On the palette, it paints a portrait of sweet spices and fruits, making it a beautiful blend that can be appreciated as is, paired with grilled chicken or lamb chops, or slightly chilled and enjoyed paired with berry-infused ice cream during the warm summer months.
The white blend comprises two varieties, 51% Chenin Blanc and 49% Sauvignon Blanc for a “fun and friendly” blend. “[Chenin] is probably one of the most versatile varieties that you have, which is why we selected it for the Cape Portrait,” explained cellar master Martin Moore. “By just playing around with other varieties, you can swing Chenin any way you want to, and we wanted to be fun and friendly.”
On the nose, the white blend offers an array of delightful smells, with the combination of winter melon, citrus, nectarines and green figs all satisfying the olfactory senses. Best enjoyed with chicken dishes, grilled fish or summer salads, this Cape Portrait wine is crisp yet soft, painting a portrait of lime, citrus and tropical fruit on the palette.
However, before twisting the bottle cap to pour a glass and taste Durbanville Hills’ flavoursome duo of Cape Portrait wine blends, one can’t help but admire the alluring label. Like the duo of wines, the label was inspired by Cape Town. However, it not only represents the vibe and spirit of the Mother City but also that “what makes Cape Town, Cape Town” – her people.
For the vibrant illustration, the designers, each hailing from various parts of the Mother City, played with the idea of “perception”. Those with a keen eye will notice not only the vibrant colours and fine illustrations of various iconic Cape Town landmarks, such as the Muizenberg beach huts, but also the Rubin’s vase motif, an optical illusion created by Danish psychologist Edgar Rubin in 1915. The latter design feature tests perception, with the two opposing faces forming a wineglass.
One could even argue that this represents two people meeting to share a bottle of Cape Portrait wine. And, indeed, drink the whole bottle. Durbanville Hills Winery’s Cape Portrait blends are flavoursome, easy-to-drink wines that is perfect for any occasion.