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Ernie Els Big Easy Red Blend 2011

Other Red Blends from South Africa
  • ST88
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Winemaker Notes

Ernie Els is known as "The Big Easy" due to his imposing height along with his fluid golf swing. This wine, made by cellar master Louis Strydom, reflects the same bold, balanced and winning nature.

With a dense and full-bodied palate, spice abounds from the dominant Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon adds punchy tannins and a robust structure. Floral and savoury notes from Mourvedre, Cinsaut and Viognier all contribute to the exotic rhythm of the Big Easy.... View More

Critical Acclaim

ST 88
International Wine Cellar

Good dark, bright red. Brooding, inky aromas of blackberry, licorice and herbs complemented by a suggestion of dried berries. Silky on entry, then firm and a bit youthfully stunted in the middle palate, with black fruit, herb and spice flavors complicated by a leathery nuance. Sound acidity gives this wine good lift, but I'd wait a year or two before pulling the cork.
Rating: 88(+?)

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Ernie Els

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Ernie Els, , South Africa
Ernie Els
As a leading South African ambassador and one of the most recognizable faces in the world of sports, Ernie Els has long demonstrated a passion for excellence. Focus, discipline and commitment have led to his extraordinary golf success. These same qualities are evident in Ernie Els Wines, a quest to produce premium wine that was born in 1999. Els naturally chose Stellenbosch, South Africa's most storied wine region, to produce his wines... View More

Pinot Blanc

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Lightly aromatic, pleasantly soft, and always approachable...

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Lightly aromatic, pleasantly soft, and always approachable, Pinot Blanc is best known in Alsace, where it is considered a workhorse variety that takes a backseat to the more complex Pinot Gris. A white mutation of Pinot Noir, it produces easy-drinking, enjoyable wines here. In Italy, as Pinot Bianco, it gets a little more complex, especially in the mountainous Alto Adige region. It is perhaps most successful as Weissburgunder in Germany and Austria, where the wines are subtle, delicate, surprisingly complex, and age-worthy. There is also some Pinot Blanc performing well in Oregon and cooler pockets of California.

In the Glass

Typically, Pinot Blanc has a relatively full body and expresses simple but pleasing aromas of crisp green apple, pear, citrus, and white flowers. The finest examples possess stony minerality and occasionally ripe stone fruit flavors, and with age can develop intriguing notes of honey, vanilla, and almond.

Perfect Pairings

Delicate Pinot Blanc works well with lighter fare such as salads, seafood, chicken, or turkey, but is truly at its best with Alsatian pairings like Hollandaise dishes, onion tarts, or the region’s notable soft cheeses such as Muenster.

Sommelier Secret

Pinot Blanc’s delicate aromatics, full body, and moderate acidity make it a great alternative to the world’s most popular white wine. Anyone experiencing Chardonnay fatigue and looking to try something new would benefit from giving Pinot Blanc a try.