Simonsig Collects Gold for Stalwarts Cap Classique and Chenin Blanc

During the frenetic pace of Cape Wine 2015, South Africa’s tri annual international wine show, Simonsig Wine Estate from Stellenbosch took time out to collect wine awards at two leading competitions.
The well-known wine estate owned by the Malan family won two premier awards at both the Amorim Cap Classique Challenge and the International Wine and Spirits Competition (IWSC).

Simonsig, the first producer of Cap Classique – South African bottle-fermented sparkling wine – collected gold medals at the Amorim Cap Classique Challenge for its Cuvée Royale Blanc de Blancs 2011 and the Simonsig Kaapse Vonkel Brut 2012. Simonsig has been the overall winner of the Cap Classique Challenge three times.

Chenin Blanc, the first grape variety to be bottled by Simonsig in 1968, was also awarded two gold medals at the IWSC for the Chenin Avec Chêne 2014 and the Simonsig Chenin Blanc 2015.
According to Simonsig cellarmaster Johan Malan the past week’s accolades were welcome rewards for the estate’s commitment to consistency in terms of wine quality as well as expressing its Stellenbosch terroir.

“The Amorim Cap Classique awards are always special for Simonsig, being the first winery to pioneer the Méthode Cap Classique process in 1971,” says Malan.

“Back then we were the only farm to make Cap Classique, so standing out from the crowd was not a problem as there wasn’t any! But today there are 114 Cape Classiques entered into the Amorim Challenge alone and the category is extremely competitive and diverse. To still feature on the winners podium remains an honour and reinforces our commitment to Cap Classique and its status as one of South Africa’s premier wine categories.”

Simonsig is also renowned for its Chenin Blanc which has formed the backbone of its white wine portfolio since 1968. Chenin Avec Chêne 2014, one of the estate’s IWSC gold-scoring Chenin Blancs is made from Simonsig’s oldest Chenin Blanc vineyard, one which was planted in 1986. This wine also featured in this year’s South African Top 10 Chenin Blanc competition for the second consecutive year.
“Simonsig’s weathered shale soils are ideal for the wines to express Chenin Blanc’s aromatic characteristics, as the popularity of our Chenins have shown over the past few decades,” says Malan. “These soils give an intense, perfumed fruit profile with consistent edges of minerality – both in the wooded Avec Chêne as well as in our unwooded Chenin Blanc.

“Chenin Blanc has undergone a revival on the international wine scene, largely due to an increased awareness of the top quality wines made by South African wineries. With the awards at the IWSC Simonsig is proud to be part of this wave of interest in Chenin Blanc, especially with the recognition afforded wines made in Stellenbosch, the wine region in which Simonsig’s roots are embedded.”