Starry honour for a stellar wine named for a rare and starry flower.
Vondeling Wines has been awarded five stars in the 2021 Platter’s South African Wine
Guide for Babiana 2019, a distinctive white blend aptly named for the rare indigenous
Babiana noctiflora, a starry night-blooming flower found only on the Paardeberg
mountain that Vondeling calls home.
Six Vondeling wines also received 4.5-star ratings, showing the depth of the Voor
Paardeberg winery’s range and its ability to produce outstanding wines across diverse
varietals and styles. Vondeling Monsonia 2017, the red blend sister to Babiana, and
the Bordeaux blend Vondeling Philosophie 2015 each scored 94 points, putting them
within just one point of five-star status.
“This is the second Platter’s five-star rating accorded to our flagship Babiana, after the
2015 vintage received five stars in the 2017 guide. The wine has consistently received
4.5 stars in other vintages, along with competition medals and impressive ratings from
international critics, testimony to the consistent excellence of a wine that is close to
our hearts because it celebrates the natural heritage that we are passionate about
conserving in our unique environment of the Voor Paardeberg,” Vondeling managing
director Julian Johnsen said.
Vondeling Babiana 2019 scored 95 points, earning the wine the status of “superlative,
a South African classic”.
Babiana 2019 is one of only 212 wines to receive the coveted five-star rating in the
2021 edition of the widely respected and comprehensive guide to South African wine,
which contains ratings and reviews of more than 8,000 wines.
“We’re thrilled with a second five-star rating for Babiana, as well as the 94-point scores
for Monsonia and Philosophie – a great achievement which puts them into the class
of the highest-scoring wines reviewed for the ultimate five star ratings. Equally exciting
is the 4.5 stars and 92-point score for our maiden vintage Bowwood Chenin Blanc
2019, tasted for Platter’s before its public release and already showing its superb
“All our grapes come from the Vondeling farm and these ratings show that the farm
has the depth and ability to produce quality wines across a broad range of styles from
single varietal wines to blends, and bubbly to dessert wine,” said Vondeling winemaker
Copeland said Babiana, now in its 15th vintage, was widely recognised as a distinctive
and premium Cape white blend and showed how Chenin Blanc, the backbone of the
wine, could “transform from workhorse to thoroughbred”.
The five-star Vondeling Babiana 2019 is a blend of predominantly Chenin Blanc from
a 33-year-old single vineyard, its age and low yields producing intense fruit
concentration and a rich textured palate, with Rhone varietals Grenache Blanc,
Viognier and Roussanne tempering the fullness and adding vibrancy, bold aromatics
and flavour complexity.
Vondeling’s 4.5 starred wines in full: Vondeling Monsonia 2017, Philosophie 2015,
Bowwood Pinotage 2017, Bowwood Chenin Blanc 2019, the dessert wine Sweet
Carolyn 2018, and the Rurale Méthode Ancestrale 2016 Blanc de Blancs bubbly.