Full Review

Marula

Marula
2015 Pinotage, Western Cape

Pair this wine with:
Lamb Pork

Category: Pinotage

Date Tasted:
Country: South Africa
Alcohol: 13.8% RS: <1%
88 Points
Silver Medal
Highly Recommended
$15.99

Marula
2015 Pinotage, Western Cape

Pair this wine with:
Lamb Pork

Category: Pinotage

Date Tasted:
Country: South Africa
Alcohol: 13.8% RS: <1%
Dusty ruby color. Fruity aromas of blackberry cobbler and chocolate petite fours with raspberry filling with a lightly tannic, crisp, dryish medium body and a smooth, complex, medium-long slate, tar, dry roasted almonds, and sea salt finish with well-integrated tannins and light oak flavor. A velvety, fruity wine with ample South African flair.

Tasting Info

Wine Glass Style: Fruity, Juicy & Smooth & Oaky
Aroma Aroma: blackberry cobbler and chocolate petite fours with raspberry filling
Taste Flavor: slate, tar, dry roasted almonds, and sea salt
Sweetness Sweetness: Dryish
Enjoy Enjoy: Now on its own and with food
Recipes Pairing: Lamb Kebobs, Lamb Tagine, Souvlaki
Bottom Line Bottom Line: A velvety, fruity wine with ample South African flair.

The Producer

Traveling Vineyard

The Producer
127 High Street
Ipswich, MA 01938
USA
1 707-234-4747

Their Portfolio

89 5 String 2015 Petite Sirah, Lodi 12.44% (USA) $21.99.
92 Activist 2016 Private Reserve, Syrah, Santa Barbara County 13.38% (USA) $28.99.
92 Armatura 2015 Marche Rosso IGT 14.4% (Italy) $22.99.
90 Avincerre 2015 Rosso Piceno DOC 13% (Italy) $17.99.
86 Beeline 2015 Symphony, Lodi 12.1% (USA) $17.99.
84 Bella Mente 2015 Pinot Grigio, Venezie IGP 11.5% (Italy) $16.99.
88 Bella Mente 2016 Pinot Grigio, Delle Venezie IGT 11.5% (Italy) $16.99.
84 Bent Gate 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, California 13% (USA) $17.99.
92 Bright Eyed Bird NV White Blend, Paso Robles 14.96% (USA) $16.99.
88 Bright Eyed Bird NV White Blend, California 13.6% (USA) $17.99.
85 Caballeria de Luna 2016 Off-Dry White Blend, Penedes 12% (Spain) $14.99.
84 Calamity Sue 2015 Riesling, Monterey County 11.3% (USA) $16.99.
93 Calamity Sue 2016 Riesling, Arroyo Seco 13.1% (USA) $17.99.
86 Fil Dore 2017 Pinot Gris, Pays d’Oc IGP 13% (France) $18.99.
81 Giovina 2017 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC 13.5% (Italy) $17.99.
88 Hoot 2016 White Blend, Symphony-Muscat of Alexandria, California 12.4% (USA) $16.99.
88 Hoot 2018 White Blend, Paso Robles 13.6% (USA) $18.99.
86 Hot Ticket 2015 Shiraz, Murray-Darling 14.5% (Australia) $16.99.
82 Ibrido 2015 Manzoni Bianco, Veneto IGP 12.5% (Italy) $15.99.
90 Ignia 2014 Red Blend, Portugal 13.9% (Portugal) $17.99.
92 Ignia 2015 Portuguese Red, Portugal 13.8% (Portugal) $17.99.
89 Ignia 2016 Portuguese Red Blend, Portugal 14.2% (Portugal) $17.99.
88 Jitterbug 2016 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13.27% (USA) $17.99.
88 Jitterbug 2018 Sauvignon Blanc, California 13.4% (USA) $17.99.
83 Lancre 2016 Rose, Pays d’Oc IGP 12.5% (France) $16.99.
87 LUXX 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara 14.3% (USA) $29.99.
89 LUXX 2016 Sculpterra Vineyard, Merlot, Paso Robles 13.43% (USA) $29.99.
80 LUXX 2017 Merlot, Monterey County 13.72% (USA) $29.99.
88 Marula 2015 Pinotage, Western Cape 13.8% (South Africa) $15.99.
86 Moto Rouge 2018 Nebbiolo, Paso Robles 13.6% (USA) $19.99.
83 Never Have I Ever 2017 Pinot Noir, South-Eastern Australia 13.2% (Australia) $16.99.
87 OJA! 2016 Monastrell-Syrah, Yecla 13.9% (Spain) $15.99.
84 Pajama Drama 2018 Malvasia Bianca, Paso Robles 13.3% (USA) $17.99.
86 Pebble 2016 Viognier, California 13.9% (USA) $17.99.
92 Pebble 2016 Viognier, Paso Robles 13.3% (USA) $17.99.
87 Peekaboo 2016 Chardonnay, South-Eastern Australia 13.1% (Australia) $15.99.
82 Peekaboo 2017 Chardonnay, South-Eastern Australia 13.5% (Australia) $15.99.
86 Pendeloque 2018 Red Blend, Pays d’Oc IGP 14.05% (France) $17.99.
85 Rayado 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon, Central Valley 13% (Chile) $16.99.
88 Scusami 2016 Nero D’Avola-Merlot, Terra Siciliane IGT 13% (Italy) $16.99.
84 Small Hours 2015 Zinfandel, Lodi 16% (USA) $17.99.
84 Small Hours 2016 Zinfandel, Lodi 14.6% (USA) $17.99.
87 Small Hours 2018 Reserve, Zinfandel, Paso Robles 15.4% (USA) $19.99.
90 Smirk 2016 Moscatel, Western Cape 12.5% (South Africa) $15.99.
86 Smirk 2017 Moscatel, Western Cape 12.5% (South Africa) $15.99.
88 Spruzzi 2015 Grillo, Terre Siciliane IGP 13.5% (Italy) $14.99.
89 State Room 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, Western Cape 14.1% (South Africa) $17.99.
86 Steeple Street 2016 Chardonnay, California 14.31% (USA) $17.99.
84 Steeple Street 2016 Chardonnay, California 13.4% (USA) $17.99.
86 Three Hearts 2017 Rosé, Pays d’Oc IGP 13% (France) $18.99.
82 Tria 2013 Pinot Noir, Monterey County 14.09% (USA) $22.99.
85 Tria 2015 Syrah, Lodi 16.3% (USA) $23.99.
93 Tria 2016 Reserve, California 14.3% (USA) $25.99.
88 Tria 2017 Syrah, California 13.9% (USA) $24.99.
80 Veronica Creek 2017 Red Blend, California 13.5% (USA) $19.99.
87 Zapatazo 2017 Torrontes, Famatina Valley 13% (Argentina) $17.99.
90 Zeffer Hills 2018 Chardonnay, Paso Robles-Lodi 14.22% (USA) $18.99.

Pinotage

Wine Glass Zinfandel.jpg
Serve in a Zinfandel Wine Glass
Pinotage is the signature red variety of South Africa; it was developed there in 1925 as a cross of Pinot Noir and Cinsaut. The wines made from Pinotage are quite ripe, with flavors of wild cherry and blueberry and have a bit of a wild streak to them with aggressive tannins. Most are reasonable priced from $10-$15 and are thus meant for consumption within three to five years. Pair these wines with stews, duck, roast pork or tangy cheeses.

There are also a few producers of Pinotage in the US as well as New Zealand.

Though thought of as distinctly New World, South Africa's wine industry is actually over 300 years old. With recent governmental changes, South Africa has left its long period of international isolation. Wine drinkers in the US are beginning to see more and more of the fabled "Cape" wines on the domestic market. These wines actually share more in common with Old World styles than with their New World counterparts.

Produced in a cooler climate with a distinct maritime influence, South African wines are generally a couple of degrees lower in alcohol than those from Australia or California, and have higher levels of acidity with relatively firm structures. All in all, the national style shares much in common with that of France. Balance and moderation are the buzzwords, making these wines exceptionally friendly at the table. South African wines do have some unique signatures, however. Fans note a distinctive minerally flavor, present particularly in the reds, that we usually described as tar-like.

This nuance can often be found in pinotage, a wine unique to the area. A cross between pinot noir and cinsault (an obscure grape from the south of France) pinotage is a lighter- to mid-weight red with lots of character. It is one of the few wines in the world that, when fully ripe, smells like blueberries! Blueberries and tar or not, South Africa produces a range of distinctive wines to tempt the adventurous.