Ayama Vermentino 2019

As usual, I’m the last person in town to taste this wine.

Thank goodness Vino Pronto was able to solve this problem!

The Wine:

You know when you’re making caramelised sugar and walk away for just a second...and you think ‘nooooo’...but then realise that ‘aaaactually, it’s perfect’?It is THE most enticing nose of burnt sugar, dark caramel, OG Wilson’s toffee blocks (aka tooth extraction by toffee). And then preserved lemons, scorched naartjie peel, brown pears, quince, apricots, hints of tropical fruits (the closest I could get was Delicious Monster fruit...pretty specific, I know), fresh fennel, beeswax, nutmeg, and smoke.

Surprisingly fuller bodied with a waxiness to it. Good acid and good length that leaves you with stony minerality, lemongrass essential oil, green apple, gentle grapefruit peel and almond skin bitterness, traces of riper fruits, green melons...and smoke.

Vini + Viti:

100% Vermentino from Voor Paardeberg in Paarl, brief maceration on skins, fermented in tank, transferred to barrel (I think it’s still neutral oak?), lees ageing with weekly battonage for a few months. I hereby petition that all interesting wines have detailed spec sheets! Fermented in music?!?

Final thoughts:

Urghhh, this wine...so so good! The label - someone should be really proud of this beauty. The wax - help my soul...me and the Coravin had a massive disagreement but I insisted that we savour this for as long as possible. The real ribbon...that was an adventure. But the wine...urghh...I’m so so pleased that I finally got to try this. Very, very high on the ‘best of 2022’ list. [Edit: I also had the pleasure of meeting the delightful owners who've promised to have their homegrown artichokes ready when I arrive for a visit!]

Find the Wine:


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