Named by a previous owner after the Malvern Hills in England, and Frenchified by the current owner, Seymour Pritchard. Clos Malverne benefits from the cool-climate of the Devon Valley to produce structured wines, like this still-young 2004. With juicy, blackberry flavors, and layers of toast and herbs, this is a finely balanced wine. Not imported.
If any proof were needed that South African wines are stylistically as close to Europe as they can be to California, it would be in this wine. With its tight structure, mineral fruit character and enclosed layer of cassis fruits, this is as Bordeaux as it gets outside southwest France.
A flourish of floral perfume lingers until the last moments of tasting. Lime and candied lemon carry from the nose to the palate, with an accent of honey. The bright acidity and a food-friendly herbal tang on the finish lend stability to the sweet expression of fruit. —K.F.
Suave and dark, with blackberry-licorice aromas and flavors, a full mouthfeel and substantial tannins. If this comes off as slightly facile due to the very pronounced oak, it still has great appeal. Finishes long and smooth, with black coffee and espresso notes, and the structure to age for a few years.
This wine has an appealing, roasted quality to the dark berry flavors. A roasted game note mixes with berry in the nose, and comes through again in the mouth. Medium-bodied, with good tannin and a sweet and tangy oak finish. Imported by 57 Main Street Wine Co.
The aromas of red plum, anise, leather, brown sugar and sawdust repeat on the palate with an herby edge. Endive and white pepper carry on the finish. The moderate balance makes for an easy-drinking experience anytime.
Cherry, plum and toast elements mingle in this stylish but rather dry, lean red. Nevertheless, the oak bears heavy on the fruit. Shows substantial structure and should hold well though the decade. But a more refined fruit-to-wood balance could elevate this red to the heights it clearly aspires to.