Like a good book, I’m eagerly turning the page to lose myself in the next chapter of Journey’s End Vineyards‘ wine stories. This specific tale is one about the newly released “V Series”.
I was first introduced to Journey’s End Vineyards‘ wine portfolio through a gifted set of their “Tales Series” wines, which includes a Sauvignon Blanc, a Chardonnay and two red blends.
I thoroughly enjoyed everything about this range; from the labeling and typography to the stories behind each bottle. And most of all, of course, I adored the contents of the bottles themselves!
This time around, I was gifted two of their “V Series” wines; a gorgeous Chardonnay 2018 and a moody Shiraz 2017. I simply couldn’t wait to settle down with Journey’s End, and wait for their wines to tell me their stories.
Journey’s End, the picturesque boutique winery and vineyard situated on the mountain slopes above Sir Lowry’s Pass Village near Somerset West in the Helderberg basin, have released their rebranded ‘V Series’ range of wines to high acclaim.
On release, the Journey’s End V Chardonnay 2018 was honoured with a Top 10 placing and 93 points in Winemag.co.za’s 2019 Prescient Chardonnay Report and the Journey’s End V Shiraz 2016 received a Gold medal at the 2019 Michelangelo Awards.
One of South Africa’s most sustainable and experimental wineries, Journey’s End Vineyards was purchased by the Gabb family (originally from Shropshire, UK) in 1995, recognising the uniqueness of this beautiful farm with its magnificent views but, most significantly, its proven excellent terroir (press release).
Read my blog on their “Tales Series” below!
Journey’s End Vineyards “V Series”
Journey’s End Vineyards ‘V Series’ (Vineyard Series), comprises a Chardonnay 2018, Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Shiraz 2016, Merlot 2016 and a maiden release, a Cabernet Franc 2017.
Journey’s End V Chardonnay 2018
Tasting notes: Expressive fruit, initially lemon and citrus, but under that, it’s more tropical and pineapple, all seamed through with crushed almond, savoury oak tones.
In the vineyard: Handpicked early morning from 2 different blocks. The one block was picked at 22.5 balling which gives the citrus/ minerality character to the wine. The other block was picked at 24.5 balling and contributes to the riper fruit flavours in the wine.
In the cellar: Oak matured for 9 months in 30 % new French oak barrels. Only 30 barrels produced.
Cellar door price: approx. R165 per bottle
The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: An oaked Chardonnay is an acquired taste, for sure. But once you have come to appreciate and savour the delicate, toasty nuances of an aged Chardonnay, you’d rarely want to drown it in vibrant food flavours. Sometimes, all it needs is some quiet time and a good book.
When it comes to complex aged wines, I’m always an advocate for uncomplicated recipes, using a few high quality ingredients, only to enhance and complement the natural profile of the wine – not to compete with it.
For me, it was as simple as thick, slightly gooey slices of brie, draped over pillowy, chewy rounds of sourdough bread. A handful of lemony, plump olives in between, and this Chardonnay whispered the most beautiful stories in my ear.
It also loves roasted or caramelised vegetables and pasta or pastry. Think roasted butternut or caramelised, sticky onions. Creamy cheeses and anything nutty, especially pine nuts. Buttery salmon or even grilled chicken on the bone. A gorgeous food wine.
Journey’s End V Shiraz 2017
Tasting notes: An expressive nose, brambleberries, campfire smoke, dusty savoury spice, this is a complex layered wine, providing lots of interest.
In the vineyard: Hand-picked early in the morning from 2 different blocks on the farm. Block 9 is 140 m above sea level and block 13 is about 170 m above sea level.
In the cellar: Matured for 16 months in 10% new American oak barrels and 21% new French oak barrels, with the remaining wine to mature in 2nd and 3rd fill American and French oak barrels. After final blending the wine was only filtered before bottling. Ready to drink now and can age until 2020. Only 17 barrels produced.
Cellar door price: approx. R180 per bottle
The Little Hedonist’s food pairing suggestion: Shiraz is my kryptonite, ever since the start of my wine drinking days. I find a good bottle of Shiraz to be something almost sacred, with those luscious, rich undertones and dark fruit notes, with just enough spice to seduce the palate into a state of indulgence.
Again, for this Shiraz 2016, I kept it simple with a loaf of sourdough bread, gorgeously fatty pepper salami and a decadent tomato pesto.
You can also pair this beauty with most red meats, especially steaks and lamb dishes. It’s hearty enough to stand up to the robust meat flavours, but silky enough to also be the perfect accompaniment to mature hard cheeses, such as Gouda or cheddar. Also great with rich, dark desserts, so the perfect all-rounder for your dinner party.
Another great chapter from Journey’s End Vineyards. The “V Series” is truly a gift to the keen wine collector, or the perfect dinner conversation starter for the avid wine enthusiast. Thank you, Journey’s End Vineyards, for letting me hear more of your stories through this gorgeous duo of wines!
Disclaimer: I was given this product(s) as part of a press drop in exchange for my honest and truthful opinion and review thereof. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are solely those of The Little Hedonist, given in good faith and in no way influenced by the company or its affiliates. All images, unless otherwise stated / credited, are also my own.
The Little Hedonist endorses responsible drinking.