KWV’s Mentors Petit Verdot was among my favourite reds of last year, so I was interested to try out some of KWV’s lower-priced wines. The South African producers have a bulging portfolio of lines under their umbrella, as a visit to their website will demonstrate — it’s like sifting through a car manufacturer’s range.
And to continue the automotive analogy, while the Mentors range represents a fleet of high-spec executive saloons, the Classic Collection is the budget workhorse. Sturdy and reliable, but with a more limited choice of fancy features. Let’s face it though… not everyone needs Bluetooth and a rear parking sensor.
I tried the Classic Collection’s Chenin Blanc, the Shiraz and the (pictured above) Sauvignon Blanc. The Shiraz is far smokier than Aussie Shirazes I’m used to, tasting, in some ways, closer to a Cabernet Sauvignon, with blackcurrant fruit, tobacco and black pepper falvours.
Chenin Blanc is a South African staple, and the Classic Collection 2018 offers the expected fresh tropical fruit flavours, including juicy melon. But my favourite of the three is the Sauvignon Blanc, with its succulent, sunshiny pear, stone fruit and tropical fruit flavours. Unsurprisingly, it’s not as sharp and acidic as cooler climate Sauv Blancs, but it retains the grape’s trademark herbaceous salinity and is somewhat more complex than you might expect at this price range
This is only a small selection of the Classic Collection range, which contains over a dozen wines in total. All the most popular varieties are covered, as well as a Petit Verdot and a Moscato. I’d be interested to see how they compare.
The KWV Classic Collection Chenin Blanc, Shiraz and Sauvignon Blanc 2018 are available from Ocado, priced £8.99