WINE REVIEW: Journey's End Weather Station Sauvignon Blanc
Can I have a show of hands of everyone who loves a good story? Now… who loves… a good wine story? 🙋🏼♀️🙋🏼♀️One of the things that will convert instantly in purchasing a bottle of wine… is not all the bells and whistles you will find on a bottle. A wine bottle covered in award stickers doesn’t convert me in purchasing a wine. For me, it will be one of four things (in no particular order) : 1 – label; 2 – the cultivar or blend; 3 – a story; 4 – the bottle shape. In this case Journey’s End… ticks 2 of these boxes.
Who is Journey’s End?
So….who is Journey’s End? I personally never heard of them before. 🙈 Have you ever been or tasted their wines before? (Please share your thoughts below in the comments section) I only discovered Journey’s End a few months back, when I received a wonderful press drop of four wines. Anxiously, I opened the box in great excitement along with my #SammyTheGinger assisting me. Immediately my eyes falls on the label and notice the simplicity of the labels. All in black and white, each with its own unique name and font. My attention and curiosity has caught me!
I just had to find out more about this wine farm. After a quick google search and learning quickly, Journey’s End is a beautiful picturesque wine farm, situating on the luscious mountain slopes just above Sir Lowry’s Pass Village, near Somerset West, in the Helderberg basin.
Journey’s End is currently one of South Africa’s most sustainable and experimental wineries. It is also under the ownership of the Gabb family. After a brand new makeover – Journey’s End “new” range of wines gives a clear differentiation between its three series: Tales, V and Precision – while maintaining a consistent theme across the family of wines.
But before I give my review the Journey’s End Weather Station Sauvignon Blanc, I want to share some interesting facts about Sauvignong Blanc.
Five Facts about Sauvignon Blanc you may not know!
Romancing in the vineyards
Romantic dreams and fairy tale imaginations is only the beginnings for the Loir Valley. Characterised by magnificent dreamy clusters of chateaux and castles, rolling gentle green valleys and its legendary wine history which dates back to the first century. It is no wonder why it is ever so popular among romantics and wine enthusiast.
But wait there is more…. you see wine friends, the legend goes something like this: many, many moons ago, under the warm French sunny skies the cheeky and wild Sauvignon Blanc ended meet up with a very handsome, charming and dashing Cabernet Franc. The affair was magical and memorable, not long after… their love child… Cabernet Sauvignon was born!
Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy Food Pairings
Guys, you can NEVER go wrong, pairing Sauvignon Blanc with food. Anything that screams a squeeze of lemon, is a perfect match for a Sauvignon Blanc. Hmmmm… just think a gorgeous garlic and herb seafood platter, a juicy piece of fish, hey even Sushi will work well. Think veggies; like roasted carrots with a hint of cumin, roasted garlic and toasted chickpeas…. oh how delicious! And it is summer, so yes, a tomato consomme? Of course, but most importantly don’t forget to chill that Sauvignon Blanc! Cheese? Yes please, your Gruyere and Goats cheese, you will have the Sauvignon Blanc singing your praises!
My name is Blanc, Fume Blanc! During the 1960’s when spies and double agents was the talk, so was Sauvignon Blanc. It had a real bad reputation. Bad wine-making practices made Sauvignon Blanc either sickly sweet or too green (grassy). This made people avoid Sauvignon Blanc like it had the plague. However thanks to our hero in this story – a guy named Robert Mondavi He knew Sauvignon Blanc is a great wine, with the right skills Sauvignon Blanc entered the market again, under the name of Fume Blanc. Fume meaning smoked. So when Sauvignon Blanc is dry fermented and aged in barrels it transforms this skinny wine into one that is complex and voluptuous.
The Wild Child
Sauvignon is the french word for Sauvage which means wild. Yes this baby is a wild one. All hands on approach in the vineyardsto prevent it from growing out of control – I mean look what happened to Cabernet Franc? Need I say more?
It also has a Bestie!
Romancing in the vineyards, being a double agent when you think it has a best friend the first thing comes to mind are these two?
Except Pinky, it is Semilon! I am sure you have seen a number of blends with Sauvignon Blanc and Semilon. They both are from the Bordeaux Region. Sometimes, also known as a White Bourdeaux. Because these two compete and compliment each other, winemakers use these two to create a more appealing vino! Who makes your favourite Semilon/Sauvignon Blanc Blend?
One more thing, before I give my review… a quick basic understanding about the characteristic of a Sauvignon Blanc.
Flavour Profile of a Sauvignon Blanc
Here is just a few characteristics you may pick up when tasting a Sauvignon Blanc. Gooseberry; grapefruit; lime; passion fruit; elderflower; fresh herbs; green grass; green peppers; jalapeño; green apple, Asian pear, kiwi, guava, white peach, nectarine, basil, tarragon, lovage, celery, lemongrass, box of chalk or wet concrete. Should the wine aged in oak, you will pick up on a few extra characters such as: vanilla, pie crust, dill, coconut, butter, nutmeg, or cream.
There are basically two flavour profiles you can pick on Sauvignon Blanc. It all depends on the style the winemaker is looking for.
The first one is cooler climate areas. Here you will find more of your typical green notes coming through such as grassy, herbaceous, green pepper, asparagus, or figs. The secret to these flavours come from a natural aromatic grape compound known as methoxy-pyrazine. Guess what… this compound is found in green bell peppers too!!. SURPRISE!!! SURPRISE!!! Now you will be able to immediately recognize a Sauvignon Blanc from a cooler climate region.
The second one is from your warmer climate areas. Here you will find more fruit forwardness and tropical notes such as guava, melon, granadilla, kiwi and even mango. Now unlike the cooler climate, here you will discover the so-called thiols. Thiols, gets created during the fermentation process. These natural volatile sulphur-compounds are the number ! reason for all this yummy fruitiness you may pick up.
My Boozy Review on Journey’s End Sauvignon Blanc
So what’s the story behind the name? Why called Weather Station?
Journey’s End Sauvignon Blanc 2019: The Behind The Weather Station Name.
Right so this Sauvignon Blanc is named The Weather Station. Reason being is because the SB11 clone, which is one of the core components used in this wine, had a big resurgence in the 1970s in Stellenbosch. It’s apt Afrikaans name is ‘Weerstasie Kloon’ (Weather station clone). Its name derived from its location next to an old Weather Station, which is now the Stellenbosch Wine Campus!
What are my thoughts on Journey’s End Weather Station Sauvignon Blanc?
This wine, I dedicate to all the people out there who think that ALL Sauvignon Blancs, are flat on the nose, too acidic and tasteless or just tastes like a bowl of green peppers. You see friends… Journey’s End Weather Station Sauvignon Blanc is every… BUT what I just described. 😀
This wine actually got me super excited, as it is bursting warm climate notes with ripe fruits. I didn’t pick up too much of the “green” notes you normally get.
It made me think immediately of the New Zealand style Sauvignon Blanc, I had when I was in the UK.
I felt that this Sauvignon Blanc had a beautiful nose and a lot going on the palate, with a beautiful lingering finish.
The Colour of the wine is a beautiful pale straw, and is clear and bright!
You pick up on lovely herbaceous character, underpinned by pear, which follows through into the flavours.
Just think a Sauvignon Blanc that is complex. You get sweet melon and a hint of grapefruit on a bed of apple and Bosche pear. Bursting with a seam of freshness giving vitality and extending the flavours all the way down. Just delicious. I would sip this wine everyday if I could.
My Boozy Food Pairing:
Because there’s substance and excellent palate weight, along with a good length I would pair this dish with a beautiful piece of trout or salmon. Just imagine a delicious poached Salmon/Trout in garlic and Sauvignon Blanc with a decadent creamy caper and lemon sauce served with buttery baby peas and a salad. I would also pair this wine with some friends, a great selection of cheese and meats and just enjoy the company. Either way, this wine is a lovely easy drinking wine to enjoy on its own, with friends or with a meal.
If you are looking for something a Sauvignon that is more fruity than your normal green pepper, green figs and asparagus I would recommend this wine.
What Happens in the Cellar?
The Sauvignon Blanc grapes are handpicked early in the morning, retaining their delicate fruit flavours. Grapes comes from an 8 ha block with 4 different clones and separate irrigation systems. This block is the highest block on the farm at 200 m above sea level. Bunches are hand sorted, destemmed and crushed as gently as possible. After crushing grapes undergo four hours of skin contact inside of the press to enhance flavour extraction. The juice is settled until clear before racked and cold fermented (10 – 14 ˚C) for almost 1 month in stainless steel tanks to enhance the typical varietal characters. After fermentation, the wine is left on the lees for 4 months with regular batonage before being racked, fined and stabilized in preparation for bottling.
Where can I purchase this wine?
YOU CAN VISIT JOURNEY’S END VINEYARDS
- Tasting, sales, cheese platters and snacks by appointment: Monday Friday: 10h00 – 17h00
- BYO picnic, walks, hikes, MTB and horse-riding
Retailing between R89 and R99 at selected retail outlets and wine merchants.
Disclaimer – My Boozy Kitchen received a bottle of this beautiful wine to taste and sample, however I wasn’t paid to write this review and the views and opinions are soley my own.