Cap Classique to receive quality charter

South Africa’s Cap Classique producers are drawing up a charter to protect and improve the quality of the country’s sparkling wines.

Speaking at the International Sparkling Wine Symposium, Pieter Ferreira, cellar master at Graham Beck Wines, highlighted the category’s rapid evolution and explained the steps currently under discussion.

“Cap Classique has grown so quickly and become so fashionable that all of a sudden everybody wants to have one,” he remarked. “It’s really important for the category that we don’t have mediocre base wines getting into the triage.”

Compared to other sparkling wine styles, Cap Classique is a relative newcomer, introduced just 40 years ago. Since its establishment in 1992, the Cap Classique Producers Association has grown from 14 members to 82, based in 20 different geographical areas including KwaZulu-Natal.

For most members, Cap Classique remains a relatively small scale enterprise: 85% of the seven million bottle annual output comes from just seven producers. However, the rate of growth – production is currently doubling every five years – has made CCPA members keen to preserve quality levels by means of this proposed charter.

The current terms under discussion would see a minimum requirement for the wine to spend nine months on lees and not be released until at least 12 months after the harvest. There would however be no restriction on grape variety and whole bunch pressing would be recommended rather than enforced.

In addition, the CCPA has registered the name “Superieur” with the OIV (International Organisation of Vine and Wine), giving it the option to enforce more stringent regulations for top Cap Classique examples.

To qualify for Superieur status, the CCPA is currently proposing that wines should spend at least 24 months on lees, with whole bunch pressing compulsory and eligible grape varieties restricted to Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, Chenin Blanc and Pinotage.

The CCPA hopes to have the charter agreed and signed by its members by 2013, with legislation coming into force by 2015. For more information, visit www.capclassique.co.za

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Events Sales Executive

The Drinks Business
Central London, UK

Sale & Operations Manager

Marussia Beverages
Marylebone, London, UK

Prestige Account Manager – Europe

Jackson Family Wines
London, UK

Sales Executive

MAISON SASSY
London, GB

Head of Supplier Management - Group

Matthew Clark
London and Bristol, UK

Brand Manager – Whisky

ATOM Brands
Tunbridge Wells, UK

Brand Manager - Gin

ATOM Brands
Tunbridge Wells, UK

International Business Development Assistant

iDealwine
Paris, France with frequent trips to London office

Events Assistant

Speciality Drinks
London, UK

Pink Rosé Festival

Cannes,France
7th Feb 2018

VinoVision Paris

Paris,France
12th Feb 2018

Vinisud

Montpellier,France
18th Feb 2018
Click to view more

Champagne Masters 2017

The only Champagne blind tasting in the UK, the competition will reward the best wines in the following categories:

The Global Rosé Masters 2017

With wines from the palest of pink to almost ruby red, bone dry to almost cloyingly sweet, reductively handled to barrel-aged, as well as gently spritzy to fully sparkling.

Click to view more