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Steenberg Vineyards to release Magna Carta MMX

Steenberg Vineyards will release the latest vintage of its iconic white blend, Magna Carta in October this year. The Magna Carta 2010 not only exemplifies the Constantia winery’s terroir, but is a reflection of the flair of talented winemaker JD Pretorius – as his first solo Magna Carta vintage.

Latin for Great Charter, Magna Carta expresses Steenberg’s declaration to create wines of only the finest quality. The 2010 is set to live up to the reputation of its forerunners, the maiden vintage Magna Carta 2007 and the second vintage Magna Carta 2009, which both scored the coveted John Platter 5-Star rating.

As Pretorius’ first Magna Carta, the new vintage showcases his penchant for producing top quality blends. Like its predecessors, the wine is also a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, his favourite white cultivars.

According to Pretorius, this vintage is distinguished by 18 months spent in the bottle, in line with Steenberg’s vision for extended bottle maturation, which ultimately leads to wines that show elegance, complexity and total integration. ‘The 2010 vintage spent nine months in barrel, followed by 18 months in the bottle, which has laid the foundation for a wine with great substance. This technique is also being applied to the 2011 vintage which will have spent nine months in barrel and more than two years in the bottle by the time it is released in March 2014’, he explains.

At 27 years of age, Pretorius is part of a new generation of talented winemakers who advocate the merit of pushing the boundaries of convention, while acknowledging the role of traditional winemaking methods in creating top quality wines. He has learned his craft from the best, and with John Loubser, Steenberg General Manager and former cellar master as his mentor, along with a hands-on approach and abiding passion for winemaking, he has already proved a great asset to Steenberg Vineyards since joining the team in 2009. His Steenberg Semillon 2010 not only made it onto the Top 100 SA Wines ratings guide for 2011, but also won a Gold Medal at the prestigious International Decanter World Wine Awards in the same year.

Magna Carta 2010 is a finely structured and balanced wine, with Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon meeting in the enticingly perfumed aromas of orange blossom, tangerine and green figs supported by a fresh mineral and gun flint character. This multi-layered wine will delight with its elegant feel on the palate and firm body, coating the mouth and flowing through into a lingering finish. All the elements add up to a wine that will age beautifully, and it can be enjoyed right now or in 10 years’ time.

The limited vintage of only 3000 bottles of Magna Carta will be on sale from mid-October. Cellar door price R460 per bottle.