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Klein Constantia going to ‘the next level’

South African producer Klein Constantia is “taking it to the next level” says winemaker Matthew Day.

Speaking at the launch of the new 2011 Vin de Constance Day said there was a new “vigour” to what the winery was doing under the auspices of owner Zdenek Bakala and with “Bordeaux legends” Hubert de Boüard and Bruno Prats also on hand, he called the developments “superb exciting”.

Along with a more sustainable approach in managing the vineyard, new equipment and some slight tweaks to the winemaking behind the estate’s flagship sweet wine such as less time in barrel, Klein Constantia has revived its Chardonnay production and begun producing a specially selected Sauvignon Blanc.

The latter – dubbed “Metis” – was inspired by Sancerre winemaker Pascal Jolivet and Day said he wanted to make it into “one of the greatest Sauvignon Blancs in the southern hemisphere”.

The key focus though is still on Vin de Constance and pushing for it to be mentioned in the same breath or even before wines like Château d’Yquem.

Day described the new 2011 as “absolutely awesome” and added he had made a few tweaks to the winemaking process to make the wines more “expressive” and aromatic – a fact that was immediately evident when it was placed in a small vertical alongside the 1996, 2001 and 2004 that were made by former winemaker Adam Mason.

“It’s the first of what we’re trying to do,” said Day.

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