In South Africa, day 1, Leeu House and a grand MCC tasting

south africa sparkling wine

In South Africa, day 1, Leeu House and a grand MCC tasting

leuu house

I arrived in South Africa yesterday morning. Greeted by a bright, brisk sunny winter’s day, I headed off to Franschhoek. This is the tourist hotspot of the winelands, and with its natural beauty and attractive town, it’s easy to see why. It’s also the current hotspot of South Africa’s thriving Methode Cap Classique (MCC) sparkling wine category, which is why I was here.


I checked in to the beautiful Leeu House, a stunning 12 room boutique hotel on the main drag in town. Part of the expanding Leeu Collection, this is one of the nicest places I’ve stayed in South Africa.


After a lovely bath (I love baths, and Leeu House has nice, deep bathtubs), I was off to Colmant for a remarkable tasting of MCC. Gathered together were some of the stars of the MCC world.

MCC tasting

Pictured above: Paul Gerber (Le Lude), JP Colmant (Colmant), Kevin Swart and Jacques Wentzel (Black Elephant Vinters), Clayton Reabow (Moreson) and Gary Baumgarten (L’Ormarins). Sadly Pieter Ferriera, one of the key MCC people, was flying to the UK the same day I was arriving, so I missed him.

This was an eye-opening, mind-expanding tasting with several flights of wines. The overall message was that MCC is a really exciting category. There’s been a lot of progress of late and the quality has taken a leap forward. I really enjoyed a lot of the wines, but particularly the Le Lude, Graham Beck, Colmant, Moreson and Black Elephant Vintners wines. These are quite superb. These are some of the wines: notes to follow.




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