Franschhoek Wine Valley

Tag Archive: Plaisir de Merle

  1. Franschhoek Vignerons once again included in the ‘ultimate’ wine list

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    The Sommeliers Selection Wine Competition, which was conceptualized in 2015, has revolutionized local wine competitions. It is a competition with a difference, as it is judged solely by top South African Sommeliers, and the winning wines for 2019 were recently announced with seven Franschhoek vignerons shining in their relevant categories.

    The vignerons who secured spots on the prestigious ‘ultimate’ wine list were the following:


    Anthonij Rupert Wyne Protea Rosé 2019


    Anthonij Rupert Wyne Protea Cape of Good Hope Serruria Chardonnay 2017


    Boschendal The Rose Garden Rosé 2019


    La Motte Pierneef Syrah Viognier 2017
    Babylonstoren Babel 2018
    Plaisir de Merle Grand Plaisir 2014


    Old Road Wine Co. The Butcher and Cleaver 2015


    La Motte Méthode Cap Classique Brut 2016

    Furthermore, Plaisir de Merle was named as one of the Stand Out Wines for the Grand Plaisir 2014 in its relevant category, which reaffirms Franschhoek as a leading wine region.

    The panel of sommeliers taste the entries blind in their relevant categories, only knowing vintage and price point, before discussing the wines and deciding if they fulfill the criteria of being placed on the Sommeliers Selection “ultimate” wine list.”

    This year, the Sommeliers Selection Competition Chairman and current board member of The South African Sommeliers Association, Joakim Hansi Blackadder chaired the judging panel. Joakim was joined on the panel by:

    • Wikus Human
    • Tinashe Nyamudoka
    • Chantelle Gous
    • Wayve Kolevsohn
    • Esmé Groenewald
    • Barry Scholfield
    • Pearl Oliver-Mbumba
    • Joseph Dhafana

    This year more than 400 wines from the country’s top wine estates were entered into the contest.

    For a full list of the results and more info visit

  2. Holden Manz and Plaisir de Merle excel in Prescient report

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    The seventh annual Prescient Cabernet Sauvignon Report has been published and two Franschhoek Vignerons impressed the judging panel, each scoring 90+ for their wines entered.

    A total of 89 entries were received from 74 producers, and the wines were tasted blind (labels out of sight) by a three-person panel, with the scoring done according to the 100-point quality scale.

    Holden Manz and Plaisir de Merle received 93 points, respectively for their wines entered. Holden Manz for their 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, and Plaisir de Merle for their Cabernet Sauvignon 2014.

    2013 Holden Manz Cabernet Sauvignon

    Plaisir de Merle Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

    To view the full report visit

  3. Gold for Plaisir de Merle at 2013 Decanter World Wine Awards

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    Plaisir de Merle Sauvignon Blanc 2012 was awarded a gold medal at the internationally respected 2013 Decanter World Wine Awards (DWWA), while its debut Grand Brut 2010 MCC took a silver.

    Cellarmaster, Niel Bester, said:  “We had high hopes of the 2012 Sauvignon Blanc after the successful sell-out of the 2011 vintage, and this has been confirmed with this award. When blending this wine my focus was on the ageing as I believe that South African Sauvignon Blancs have the potential to develop. We thought it would come into its own after 12 to 24 months – and it did. As for the 2010 Grand Brut, it has made us very proud, because it was our debut Méthode Cap Classique sparkling wine, and a new addition to our range of cultivar wines.”

    Bester – who celebrates 21 years at Plaisir de Merle this year – knows what to expect from his vineyards and earmarks specific vineyards that will give him the desired style of wine. Few cellars can boast the honour of having a winemaker with such dedication, passion and knowledge of the infinite details of getting the best from his vineyards.

    The grapes for the Sauvignon Blanc were harvested by hand and sourced from three different vineyards – two on Plaisir de Merle and one in Darling, with the grapes sourced from a cool climate area adding an extra dimension that Bester wanted, and contributing to the traditional cool climate typicity such as green peas, green figs and nettles associated with the cultivar. It is elegant, delicate with prominent passion fruit and tropical fruit aromas, but still retaining that typical Greenness in the flavour.

    The Plaisir de Merle Grand Brut MCC 2010 was made in the classic French tradition from two noble varieties, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.  A scintillating blend which truly captures the essence of these two noble cultivars with the Pinot Noir imparting distinctive body, flavour and maturity and the Chardonnay a clean flintiness.

    The Decanter World Wine Awards is the world’s leading and most rigorously judged wine competition and the most authoritative source of wine recommendations for wine lovers worldwide. This year an expert panel of 219 judges, including 75 Masters of Wine, and 13 Master Sommeliers, from 27 countries all around the world assessed 14 362 wines from 52 countries. Of these 156 wines were awarded a Regional Trophy (1.09%), 229 a Gold Medal (1.59%), 1 665 a Silver Medal (11.6%), 4 165 a Bronze Medal (29%) and 3 658 a Commended Medal (25.47%).
    Plaisir de Merle wines are available from leading bottle stores, wine departments of most supermarkets and from the Tasting Centre on the farm.  The Sauvignon Blanc 2012 sells for R90 from the cellar door and the Grand Brut 2010 MCC for R180. Plaisir de Merle Wines are exported to 43 Countries around the world. Visit the website on or follow on Facebook