91 points

Backsberg 2002 Babylons Toren Chardonnay (Paarl)

Backsberg’s top offerings, its Babylons Toren range, are impressive, showing a focus, quality and style not seen before. This is suave, with vibrant pineapple, mango and apple aromas and flavors, and ample French oak. The texture is very good—a positive tension between rich and zingy notes.

 — M.M.   Published 11/15/2004
  • Editors' Choice
90 points

Backsberg 2005 Pumphouse Shiraz (Coastal Region)

This full-bodied, spicy, savory Shiraz has all of the stylish hallmarks of the Backsberg wines; assertive but elegant, complex but fun, it starts with aromas of blackberry, smoke and leather and in the mouth, is full, round and supple with a delicious finish. It’s a big wine that can age but is enjoyable now.

 — S.K.   Published 3/1/2008
  • Editors' Choice
90 points

Backsberg 2005 John Martin Reserve Sauvignon Blanc (Paarl)

This compelling wooded Sauvignon Blanc is spicy and complex but still very fresh, striking a delicious balance between curvy and classic. Tropical fruit and vanilla meld together with a crisp minerality that lends itself to creative food pairing and refreshing summer sips.

 — S.K.   Published 7/1/2007
  • Editors' Choice
90 points

Backsberg 2003 John Martin Sauvignon Blanc (Paarl)

Achieves a fine, balance of tangy and rich elements. Grapefruit, fig and vanilla aromas and flavors abound, with a lovely tension. The texture is great, and tart citrus notes linger on the long finish. Not the zingiest, nor the weightiest, but an excellent all-around Sauvignon Blanc.

 — M.M.   Published 11/15/2004
  • Best Buy
89 points

Backsberg 2007 Pumphouse Shiraz (Coastal Region)

With 16 months in French and American oak, it should not be a surprise that this wine is as rich and wonderfully wood-spiced as it is. Earthy spice by way of clove, cinnamon sticks, anise root and cigar box bring the typical dark fruit flavors to another level. Balanced and drinkable now with a finish reminiscent of…

 — L.B.   Published 3/1/2011
  • Online Exclusive
89 points

Backsberg 2009 Kosher Chardonnay (Paarl)

The nose on this kosher Chardonnay from Backsberg is a combination of tropical fruits—banana, guava—and crisp citrus. On the palate is found more exotic fruit fullness backed by a fresh minerality. Balanced and distinctively South African. Pair with spicy Thai cuisine, seafood.

 — S.K.   Published 3/1/2010
  • Kosher
89 points

Backsberg 2003 Babylons Toren Red (Paarl)

This blend features aromas of vanilla, sweet tobacco and cherry followed by big, masculine flavors of cassis, raspberry, tobacco and cedar. Deep spice undertones add to the dimension of the wine. Ageable and intense and best paired with more robust meat dishes.

 — S.K.   Published 12/31/2009
89 points

Backsberg 2005 Elba Red (Paarl)

This blend of seven grape cultivars has an arresting aroma of violet and unfolds on the palate layer by layer, revealing alternately floral and fruity facets. The combined qualities of the grapes is intriguing and seamless—it is both easy to love and mysterious.

 — S.K.   Published 7/1/2007