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The wines of  Glen Carlou, Paarl, South Africa

PO Box 23 Simondium Road, Klapmuts 7625, South Africa
Tel: +27 21 875 5528 Fax: +27 21 875 5528
E-mail: glencarl@mweb.co.za Website: www.glencarlou.co.za
UK agent: South African Wine Imports (tel 01780 755 810, e-mail ef@australianwineries.co.uk)

Glen Carlou was purchased by Walter Finlayson in 1983, and the first wines were produced in 1988. in 1995 Glen Carlou formed a joint venture with the Hess Collection in Californiaís Napa Valley. The vineyards currently cover 65 ha of the Estateís 110 ha.

The wines are uniformly brilliant. In fact, this is one of the strongest ranges of South African wines that Iíve tasted through. Iíll let the tasting notes speak for themselves. The good news is they are stocked by Oddbins, so they should be easy enough to obtain.

Glen Carlou Chardonnay 2001 Paarl
Very forward nose is rich and toasty with good fruit intensity. Very classy palate is rich with a spicy edge and well integrated oak. The dominating feature here is the lively fruit. Very good/excellent (Oddbins £8.99)

Glen Carlou Chardonnay Reserve 2001 Paarl
Overtly creamy, toasty nose is quite oaky but classy. The rich, nutty, bready/toasty palate is intense and rich. Lovely, but a bit oakier than the regular Chardonnay. Very good/excellent (£11.99 Oddbins, Les Caves de Pyrene)

Glen Carlou Pinot Noir 2001 Paarl
This is simply brilliant. Assertive nose shows cherryish, herby fruit with just a tinge of medicinal character. Lovely bright cherryish raspberry fruit on the palate with good acidity. Quite lovely, lively fruit. Very good/excellent (£8.99 Oddbins)

Glen Carlou Tortoise Hill 2001 Paarl
An interesting blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Zinfandel and Touriga Nacional. Quite lean berry fruit nose. Lovely balance to the palate which shows pure, chunky, chewy fruit with good tannins and a lovely spicy finish. Very good+ (£8.49 Oddbins)

Glen Carlou Grande Classique 2000 Paarl
Mainly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with some Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Savoury, slightly dusty nose. Lovely concentration of firmly tannic berry fruit on the palate. Quite austere and backward at the moment, needing time to open out, but potentially brilliant in a restrained, savoury style. Very good/excellent (£9.49 Oddbins; the 1998 is the current vintage listed)

Glen Carlou Shiraz 2001 Paarl
Roasted, tarry nose with good intensity of fruit. Vivid, bright tarry fruit. Great intensity here with a spicy finish and lively acidity. Remarkable stuff. Very good/excellent (Oddbins £11.99)   

see more recent report on this producer based on a visit in December 2005

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