Boekenhoutskloof The Chocolate Block Red Blend 2020
The nose is dark, intense, and brooding with aromas of black cherries, cardamom, sweet tobacco, espresso, and subtle whiffs of perfume. The nose's dark fruit character follows through onto an exceptionally complex, juicy palate with gentle nuances of ripe plums, violets, black olives, cloves, and licorice. The mid-palate is focused, supple, and elegant with excellent, cocoa powdery tannins. The wine is medium- bodied, balanced with an earthy, layered character, covering the entire spectrum of berry fruit - from tart red plums to rich blue and blackberries. The finish is svelte, clean and dry, peppery and lingering, with hints of dried cranberry, tar, graphite, and smoke.
Blend: 73% Syrah, 11% Grenache, 8% Cinsault, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Viognier
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A stylish red that's fresh and focused, showing expressive aromas and flavors of blackberry, dried lavender, espresso and iron in a well-knit, medium- to full-bodied frame. The long, creamy finish is loaded with spice box and sweet smoke accents. Blend of Syrah, Grenache, Cinsault, Cabernet Sauvignon and Viognier.
This is a soft and fruity red with some reserve and freshness that gives it a medium body with subtle chocolate, tobacco and berry flavors. Medium finish., 73% syrah, 11% grenache, 8% cinsault, 7% cabernet sauvignon and 1% viognier. Vegan. Drink now.
Perhaps one of the most floral vintages that I’ve seen in a while, the 2020 Chocolate Block is a blend of 73% Syrah, 11% Grenache, 8% Cinsault, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Viognier. The nose is robust, juicy and expressive with hints of bramble, red and black spice and elegant purple flowers. Medium to full-bodied, the mouthfeel displays a balanced structure with focused tannins and lifting acidity that frames the mid-palate. Then wine finishes with a delightfully lingering, fruit-forward essence with a kiss of tar, roses and baked rocks. This will have no challenges making it until its 10th birthday. 2,982 barrels were produced. Give it a try. Rating:90+
Boekenhoutskloof was established in 1776. Located in the furthest corner of the beautiful Franschhoek Valley, the farm’s name means “ravine of the Boekenhout” (pronounced Bookn-Howed). The Boekenhout is an indigenous Cape Beech tree greatly prized for furniture making. In 1993 the farm and homestead was bought and restored and a new vineyard planting program was established that now includes Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Grenache, Semillon, and Viognier. Today, Marc Kent is the owner, chief winemaker, and driving force behind the dynamic farm.
The Story of the Seven Chairs
The Boekenhout is an indigenous Cape Beech tree greatly prized for making fine furniture. The Boekenhoutskloof label features seven chairs; amongst them the country-style split splat chair made in the neo-classical style with a shouldered top rail and the thonged seat from the late 18th century. Then there’s the Sandveld chair that has two back rails and a thonged seat which made its appearance in the second quarter of the 19th century. The transitional Tulbagh chair was made in the late 18th century; it has a plain back and a shaped top rail with half-round opening. The chairs on the wine labels all pay tribute to the skills of the 18th century craftsmen and their achievements in creating beauty from natural sources, just like the pursuit of fine winemaking.
Originally named Franschhoek meaning the “French Corner” because it was home to the influx of French Huguenots, today the valley contains many historic cellars and is an important tourist location because of its proximity to Cape Town.
This valley falls to the southeast of Paarl and is enclosed on three sides by towering mountains. Streams from the slopes flow down to the valley floor, converging to form the Berg River. The area excels in the production of full-bodied reds.
With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended red wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged resulting in a wide variety of red wine styles. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a red wine blend variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.
How to Serve Red Wine
A common piece of advice is to serve red wine at “room temperature,” but this suggestion is imprecise. After all, room temperature in January is likely to be quite different than in August, even considering the possible effect of central heating and air conditioning systems. The proper temperature to aim for is 55° F to 60° F for lighter-bodied reds and 60° F to 65° F for fuller-bodied wines.
How Long Does Red Wine Last?
Once opened and re-corked, a bottle stored in a cool, dark environment (like your fridge) will stay fresh and nicely drinkable for a day or two. There are products available that can extend that period by a couple of days. As for unopened bottles, optimal storage means keeping them on their sides in a moderately humid environment at about 57° F. Red wines stored in this manner will stay good – and possibly improve – for anywhere from one year to multiple decades. Assessing how long to hold on to a bottle is a complicated science. If you are planning long-term storage of your reds, seek the advice of a wine professional.