De Toren proprietors Emil and Sonette den Dulk left Johannesburg in 1991 to establish their vineyards in the Polkadraai Hills of Stellenbosch. Situated on southern facing slopes overlooking False Bay, De Toren enjoys the cooling effect of constant ocean breezes. Taking a holistic approach to keeping vineyard soils healthy and balanced, viticulturalist Ernest Manuel employs sustainable farming practices throughout the property. Infrared Aerial Imaging is used extensively in order to monitor ripeness in various vineyard blocks and determine optimal picking times, although actual harvesting and production are done almost entirely by hand.
Charred hickory and cured bacon waft from the glass, overriding but not completely overpowering the lush, fruity center. Waves of velvety tannins brush across the palate, lending structure to the ripe black cherry, blackberry and mashed plum-flesh flavors. Final hints of tree bark, licorice root and black tea unfold on the medium-length finish. It's delicious now, but should evolve well from 2021?2028.