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New Release: Taaibosch Crescendo 2019 - A Wine Worth Following
10 January 2023

The maiden 2018 release of Taaibosch Crescendo last year was an unbridled success. Capturing the imagination of critics and collectors alike, the estate’s rebirth allowed long-term enthusiasts to secure the direct descendant of the original Cordoba, South Africa’s original cult wine. The new 2019 shows that this was no beginner’s luck. Where the 2018 has a sumptuous roundness and crackling perfume, the 2019, from a fresher vintage, is all together more nuanced, vibrant and linear and will require a little patience. When we spoke to winemaker Schalk Willem-Joubert, he explained that "I adore the 2019 and I think it’s the perfect follow-up as it really shows the linearity and precision that we can achieve. It’s not a wine of excess, and I hope it will appeal even more to customers who enjoy a sense of tradition and classicism.”

A recap on its history. Post-Apartheid, the Cordoba Crescendo was South Africa’s original cult wine, and one of the most revered wines in the Cape. A Cabernet Franc-led Bordeaux blend from the Heldeberg Ward of Stellenbosch, vineyard elevation ranges from 230-350m just 7km from False Bay, with a 360-degree orientation and views over Cape Town and Table Mountain – a truly magical spot. That combination of altitude and proximity to the ocean provides a natural cooling system, perfect for later-ripening Bordeaux varieties. Though it’s hard to believe, by the early 2000s, the owners had gradually lost interest in the farm and winemaker Chris Keet was left with no choice but to move on. The last vintage bottled under the Cordoba label was 2003, although the wine was bottled for a few more years and sold off unlabelled at ridiculously low prices. From 2006, the vineyards were maintained but only as a source of grapes for other producers in the area. All signs pointed to the demise of a former icon.

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