KWV Roodeberg Red 1980

I actually decanted this and used the adult glasses with stems!

I usually can't be bothered to decant because it's just so tedious trying to clean the decanter afterwards. And I mostly drink out of cheap, stemless glasses because I'm clumsy and fear breaking the pricier stemware. But this wine felt like it deserved a little more respect. So decant, I did.

I noticed the condition of the foil and, sure enough, there was some mould on the cork. So I knew I'd have to be careful.

Popping vintage wines isn't a regular occurrence in my life,  so I don't own a Durand. I'd seen a clever method for removing older corks using two standard corkscrews...but the lazy/risk taking part of me went ahead and used only a single hinged waiter's friend.  The cork was soft and completely soaked, coming out in 2 parts. The bottom part required some patient dexterity, but not a trace of cork in the bottle after decanting. I was pretty chuffed with that. Yay me and my laziness!

The Wine:

A slightly hazy, medium tawny colour with some fine sediment. Clean and pronounced nose of raisins, prunes, dried leaves, earth, mushrooms mushrooms mushrooms. Along with tobacco and pencil shavings. 

Dry, medium+ body, tannins that have dissolved and leave only a trace on your teeth and tongue. Impressive medium acidity that’s holding this wine together, and a long, raisiny finish. The palate is all raisins, stewed prunes, dried fruits...along with salty earthy mushrooms.

Viti + Vini:

I don’t know the grapes or anything about the way that the wine was made, but I guessed Shiraz and Cab Sauv? Just looking at the back label shows that back then, wines weren't even required to declare the alcohol by volume..let alone the health warning. Here's the beauty of vintage wines: they challenge you to research the history at the time that the wine was made.  Wine Mag have an excellent article that delves into the history of the brand...with possible clues about the grapes that would have been used.


Balance (½) + Length (1) + Intensity (½) + Complexity (1) = A good wine.

This wine is too old, undeniably tired and well past it’s best...but it’s still very drinkable to me.

Final Thoughts:

Drinking something that’s roughly my age is an honour. I may not have mould, but I reckon I look as fresh as the label on this the few cracks that we share. Some parts feel a bit crumbly, but we’re holding together well enough to get the job done. I’ve always been complex, but the years have (somewhat) softened my acerbic edge. And we’re both Xennials who fully remember the old ways, but have adapted to understand this modern world.

Tasted on a Root Day according to the Biodynamic Calendar for the Southern Hemisphere.

Find the Wine:

I picked this up from Wine Cellar

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