Tasting Notes: Durbanville Hills Wine

I recently came into possession of two bottles from Durbanville Hills, a South African winery that’s about a stone’s throw from Cape Town. Hearing on good authority that wine pairs well with chocolate, I headed over to SOMA for a variety of chocolates to taste with said wine. Incidentally, that’s how all wine should be tasted—accompanied by many varieties of chocolate.

Durbanville Hills Shiraz ($12) is a deep red with a toasty nose of black pepper and cocoa. It’s complex and velvety on the palate, with complex fruit flavours like plum and cherry. The length is robust and the finish fairly toasty.

This shiraz benefits from spicier chocolates—SOMA does a number of truffles the traditional Maya way (i.e, with powdered chillies) and suit this wine well. Chocolates involving ginger, cloves, and other spices also went well. Their bergamot truffle, delicious on its own, sadly does not pair well.

Durbanville Hills Sauvignon Blanc ($12) is pale green with a fruity nose, primarily of guava and green figs. That said, I preferred this sauvignon blanc chilled, which blunts the nose. It’s light with a crisp acidity on the palate. There’s a faint suggestion of other tropical fruits, like lime and guava. The finish is brief and satisfying.

Chocolates with almonds or caramel go well with this sauvignon blanc, but it truly shines when paired with white chocolate.

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