Boplaas Family Vineyards has re-asserted its dominance as a champion winery following a glittering haul of seven Gold awards for its wines in recent weeks. Reflecting an unwavering consistency for quality, Boplaas joined the winners’ podium in this achievement at the SA Young Wine Show and the Gold Wine Awards, the results of which were both announced in recent days.
Boplaas wines received five Golds at the SA Young Wine Show – two for Boplaas Vintage Ports, two for Boplaas Tawny Ports and one for its Muscadel.
The most comprehensive competition for wines from the current vintage, the SA Young Wine Show has been a premier annual showcase since 1833. The Calitzdorp winery in turn has amassed an excellent record at the event, winning amongst others the SA Champion Port Trophy in three consecutive years from 2015.
It was an achievement that especially re-affirmed its prowess with the making of fine Cape Port wine. Boplaas Ports are made in traditional open lagars from hand selected Port cultivars like Touriga Nacional, Tinta Barocca and Souzão.
The suitability of the region for these varieties was realized quite by chance and through a fortunate accident or two. The story begins in the 1970s, when Boplaas patriarch Oupa Danie Nel returned from a visit to the Swartland with his Chevy El Camino packed with bottles of Pinotage and Shiraz. His friends and neighbours needed no encouragement to make short work of the Shiraz, so it was decided this was a variety to plant.
Vines were sourced, and vineyard sites developed. Only later however was it discovered – in part, by Carel his son who is now Boplaas owner and cellar master – that something was amiss. Carel was still studying oenology at Stellenbosch University back then when it was revealed that his father’s vines were indeed Tinta Barocca and not the intended Shiraz. A trip to Portugal followed and soon the Nels had befriended many of the Douro’s top Port producers. Over decades they were exposed to fine fortified wines, acquiring the art of crafting them too.
But it’s certainly not just Port style that has done well. Boplaas has developed skill with the Portuguese cultivars themselves, which the accolades at the Gold Wine Awards again displays. Boplaas received Gold for the Boplaas Tinta Barocca 2016 and the Boplaas Woolworths Tinta Barocca 2017.
In addition to highlighting excellent wine, the Gold Wine Awards do so from the consumer perspective. It is a consumer-judged event with qualified tasters on the panel.
Boplaas’s award-winning wines are available from the Boplaas cellar door in Calitzdorp and at its tasting room in Klipheuwel, a suburb of Klein Brak along the Garden Route. They can be ordered online, at www.boplaas.co.za. Boplaas delivers across South Africa.