The renowned Boplaas family-owned winery has added to its portfolio of wines showcasing cool climates that occur among the mountainous stretches of the Little Karoo.
Called Eerste Water, the remarkable Sauvignon Blanc reflects the diversity of excellent and unusual wines from this region famous for its arid beauty.
The small volume Eerste Water Sauvignon Blanc joins the Boplaas Stoepsit Sauvignon Blanc and Boplaas Family Reserve Bobbejaanberg Sauvignon Blanc as ambassadors for Boplaas’s cool climate collection.
Calitzdorp is generally known for its warmer weather, which makes the occurrence of vineyards best suited to cool conditions often unexpected. The vineyards that produce Eerste Water Sauvignon Blanc are among them. Snuggled between the steep mountainsides of the little-known Groenfontein Valley, the grapes receive an optimal balance of shade and sunlight. Lower temperatures associated with higher altitude and cold nights coupled with deep shale soils ensure this wine is typical of cool climate wine excellence, but with character shaped by unique terroir.
The name Eerste Water (meaning “first water” in Afrikaans) refers in large part to the location of the vineyards at the head of the valley, which is part of the Swartberg mountain range. When it rains, Eerste Water vineyards are first in line to be reached by Swartberg streams of crystal clear, nutrient-rich water.
Water is also the life-blood of the community where the Nel family has farmed since 1880. In fact, the Nel’s Dam located en route to the Groenfontein Valley is 100 years old this year and is the oldest concrete dam wall in South Africa. This is the heritage at the foundation of Eerste Water and every Boplaas wine.
The grapes for this first vintage of Eerste Water hail from the 2017 harvest. In the glass, the wine’s aromas conjure up notes of passion fruit, oyster shell and white peach with an underlying herbaceous character. The palate is full and shows minerality that is sustained by fine acidic balance through to a long, satisfying finish.
There’s only a limited quantity of the Eerste Water Sauvignon Blanc 2017 and is therefore only available at selected restaurants; through the Boplaas online e-store; and, at the winery itself, where it sells for R69 a bottle.
Boplaas (Calitzdorp) cellar door: Open Monday – Friday 09:00 – 17:00; Saturday 09:00 – 16:00 and Sunday 10:00 – 15:00
Stoepsit Bistro: 10:00 – 16:00 – open 7 days a week
Boplaas Family Vineyards, Calitzdorp – tending vines and crafting wines since 1880