De Toren follows the philosophy that it takes more than being committed to caring for grapes to produce great wines. It is their belief that to craft superior wines one must also encourage open debate and solicit feedback from the market. Yesterday, April 15th, De Toren hosted 18 wine industry individuals in a tasting session (first of three) in order to obtain valuable input and find the right fusion of the 5 varieties making up De Toren Fusion V.
Held in the new maturation cellar room at De Toren, the tasting was hosted by Owner Emil den Dulk and Winemaker Albie Koch. The tasting panel included wine retailers, winemakers, sommeliers, journalists, distributors and passionate consumers. 12 wines were tasted blind and ranked by Jean Daneel (winemaker, Jean Daneel Wines), Ingrid Motteux (Owner of Winewise, a wine consultancy and a judge for the Platter Guide), Jaap-Henk Koelewijn (Sommelier at Tokara), Joachim (Sommelier at The Roundhouse in Camps Bay), Vaughn Johnson (Wine Retailer), and Mark van Hoogstraten (Owner of Melissa’s The Food Shop), along with De Toren’s local distributor.
2009, 2007, and 2005 vintages of Fusion V were included in the blind line-up, as well as 9 potential candidates for the final blend of Fusion V 2010. The top 3 blends as rated by the tasters will be included in the next round of tastings, to be held in Cape Town next week. Winemaker Albie Koch will assemble additional blends for Round 2, based on comments and feedback from the tasting. The top 3 blends from that tasting will then be put forth for the final tasting in Johannesburg. The final blend will be assembled in approximately 1 month.
Pre-tasting discussion. Albie lets the panel know how the scoring works.
The panel included sommeliers from the Roundhouse in Camps Bay (far left) and Tokara (far right) as well as De Toren asst winemaker Charles Williams
Vaughn Johnson (center, owner of one of Cape Town's most prestigious wine shops) tastes alongside Emil and Sonette.
A reception in the cellar featuring De Toren Fusion V and Z 2008, along with Jean Daneel Signature Chenin Blanc 2009, followed the tasting.