Crystallum is a small winery established in 2007 by brothers Peter-Allan and Andrew Finlayson. Their father, Peter, was a pioneer in the production of cool climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir at Bouchard Finlayson, so after university it seemed the natural thing for the boys to return home and source some fruit from the Hemel-en-Aarde valley to start their own label. Crystallum is now one of the most highly regarded wineries in South Africa, yet the Finlaysons are determined to make even better wines. Peter-Allan has sourced fruit from some new vineyards, while winemaking has evolved. All of the wines are now fermented using indigenous yeasts and new oak has been reduced to help the bright fruit shine through.
A wine that follows in the full bodied footsteps of the 2019 with cranberry, pomegranate and bruised strawberry on the nose as well as rose, rosemary and fynbos. The palate shows a darker edge, featuring olive tapenade and soy as well a hint of grilled m††eat. The tannins are supple but, with a stemmy, pine-needle grip that adds structure along with a fresh acid, this wine is accessible now and will improve through 2030.
The nose shows blueberry, orange rind and black forest cake as well as the exotic spiciness of nutmeg and sumac. The palate is complex and alluring, with cherry pith, dates and cloves beside a fennel and caraway seed texture in the fresh tannins.
This is both a fuller bodied and more exotic vintage, showing white peach, papaya, jasmine and notable lemongrass on the nose. A palate of butterscotch and lemon curd is tart yet mouth-coating and cut by a stony, saline spine that keeps the wine taut and upright. Pronounced in its youth but can be aged to 2028 and perhaps beyond.
This "Cuvée Cinéma" has a nose of candied cherry, sweet spices and rose alongside smokey and herbal notes and a slight saline edge. The palate is a touch richer than the previous vintage, with dark chocolate and aniseed adding a savoury counterpoint to the lifted, fresh red fruit. Grippy tannins and bright acidity hold everything in balance, giving a long finish.