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Concentrated, chiselled palate [...] with refreshing acidity and fine tannins.

DWWA 2021

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Big Easy Red Blend, Ernie Els

A blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and Viognier from in and around the Stellenbosch region.

This vintage displays a dark, brooding nose with damp forest and meaty notes lifted by crunchy red and black fruits, with a savoury spice overlay. Aromas of bay leaf and hints of vanilla follow. This wine is vibrant and alight with a youthful energy, ending with a juicy, sweet-fruited flourish. In 2018, a blend of 60% Shiraz, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Grenache, 5% Mourvèdre, 5% Cinsault and 5% Viognier.
** Gift boxed magnum available**

Technical analysis

ALCOHOL

14.5 %

RESIDUAL SUGAR

3.0 g/L

pH

3.58

ACIDITY

5.9 g/L

ORIGIN

South Africa

WINEMAKER

Louis Strydom

VARIETY

Red Blend

FINED USING

Egg white

TIME IN OAK

14 months

MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION

Yes

CLOSURE

Screw top

BOTTLE SIZE

75cl

REGION

Western Cape

VEGETARIAN

Yes

VEGAN

No

Vintage conditions

The 2018 harvest season will be remembered as the drought season. Ernie Els Wines considered themselves lucky to have bountiful water on the Helderberg. They were, however, still careful with water use during the summer months leading up to harvest and have been working hard to adapt their viticultural techniques during the past 3 years to help the vineyards cope optimally with the heat and limited irrigation. The drought was further buffered by a surprisingly cooler season that allowed the vines to react to the drought with no abnormal growth patterns observed. Vine canopies were kept thin for sunlight, and of course, less leaves meant less water needed. The vines’ natural instinct was to produce small bunches with smaller berries – usually the start of a great wine! With moderate, but warm days during December and January, the start of harvest returned to its normal date. The uninterrupted warmth during harvest also helped the bunches reach optimal ripeness while the berries steadily developed their flavours over a slightly longer period of time.

Vinification details

The grapes were hand-picked in the cool of early morning. Whole berries were fermented in open top tanks and barrels with intermittent pump-overs and punch-downs to ensure a balance between flavour, colour and tannin extraction from the skins. All ferments were meticulously monitored during fermentation to ensure that the natural aromas and flavours were preserved and highlighted as required. After primary fermentation some tanks and barrel underwent extended maceration as required. Each variety was maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels (80% in 300 litre French oak barrels and 20% in 300 litre American oak barrels) for 14 months before blending and eventual bottling.

Awards

DWWA: Silver

Green credentials

Accredited Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) estate.

Have a trade enquiry?
Contact us to discuss

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Big Easy Red Blend, Ernie Els

A blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and Viognier from in and around the Stellenbosch region.

The 2017 Big Easy is arguably the most serious vintage yet. It is a shade darker with a black core, offering a brooding nose that takes time to unfold. Complexity is revealed with elegantly ripe black berry, liquorice, fine Chinese spice and smoked herbs. A majority of Shiraz (60%) cloaks the palate with fruit-laden tannins, covered in melted milk chocolate and morello cherries. 20% Cabernet Sauvignon adds a backbone of minerality and definition, while equal parts of Cinsaut, Mourvèdre, Grenache and Viognier (5% each) add a Mediterranean feel.

Technical analysis

ALCOHOL

14.6 %

RESIDUAL SUGAR

2.8 g/L

pH

3.65

ACIDITY

5.8 g/L

ORIGIN

South Africa

WINEMAKER

Louis Strydom

VARIETY

Red Blend

FINED USING

Egg white

TIME IN OAK

14 months

MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION

Yes

CLOSURE

Screw top

BOTTLE SIZE

75cl

REGION

Western Cape

VEGETARIAN

Yes

VEGAN

No

Vintage conditions

The previous growing season had its challenges, which seemed to roll over into the 2016/2017 growing season with the continuation of the drought. Winter 2016 was quite dry with even less rain than the previous year, while spring quickly passed straight into warmer summer days. Bud burst was good due to sufficient soil moisture, but with the warmer spring/summer weather the soil started losing moisture quickly, resulting in naturally reduced shoot growth. The vineyard then focused its energy on developing and ripening the small bunches, with smaller berries leading to more concentrated colour and flavour. The dry conditions also meant that both the vineyards and grapes were very healthy. With moderate, but warm days during December and January the start of harvest returned to its normal date. The uninterrupted warmth during harvest also helped the bunches reach optimal ripeness while the berries steadily developed flavours over a slightly longer period of time.

Vinification details

The grapes were hand-picked in the cool of early morning. Whole berries were fermented in open top tanks and barrels with intermittent pump-overs and punch-downs to ensure a balance between flavour, colour and tannin extraction from the skins. All ferments were meticulously monitored during fermentation to ensure that the natural aromas and flavours were preserved and highlighted as required. After primary fermentation some tanks and barrel underwent extended maceration as required. Each variety was maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels (80% in 300 litre French oak barrels and 20% in 300 litre American oak barrels) for 14 months before blending and eventual bottling.

Green credentials

Accredited Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) estate.

Have a trade enquiry?
Contact us to discuss

Download full size images

Big Easy Red Blend, Ernie Els

A blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and Viognier from in and around the Stellenbosch region.

Quite perfumed and fittingly complex, the palate is full of chocolate, spice and confectionary cherries. A peppery nuance adds further character, all framed by a fine structure and juicy core. 60% Shiraz, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Grenache, 3% Mourvèdre, 7% Cinsaut, 5% Viognier.

Technical analysis

ALCOHOL

14.0 %

RESIDUAL SUGAR

3.7 g/L

pH

3.61

ACIDITY

5.9 g/L

ORIGIN

South Africa

WINEMAKER

Louis Strydom

VARIETY

Red Blend

HARVEST DATE

March 2016

FINED USING

Egg white

TIME IN OAK

14 months

MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION

Yes

CLOSURE

Screw top

BOTTLE SIZE

75cl

REGION

Western Cape

VEGETARIAN

Yes

VEGAN

No

Vintage conditions

Challenging conditions led to a reduced wine grape crop for South African producers in 2016, but grapes were healthy and concentrated flavours promise good wines. The weather was very warm, especially from the end of October towards the end of January, which restricted the growth and constituted lower bunch masses and smaller berries. However, the dry conditions led to the vineyards and grapes being very healthy overall. Spring came on time and the weather conditions were ideal which led to good, even bud burst. The harvest period started a week early due to the warmer weather and it ended about two weeks earlier.

Vinification details

On the sorting table, all excess stalks and inferior berries were carefully removed. Grape bunches were gently destalked and lightly crushed before fermentation took place in 7-ton, open-top stainless steel tanks. The wines were pumped-over and punched-down manually three to five times per day to ensure maximum colour extraction from the skins. After primary fermentation the maceration period was 10 – 16 days before pressing. Each variety was maturated separately in oak barrels (80% in 300 litre French oak barrels and 20% in 300 litre American oak barrels) before blending and eventual bottling.

Awards

Veritas 2017: Silver

Green credentials

Accredited Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) estate.

Have a trade enquiry?
Contact us to discuss

Download full size images

Big Easy Red Blend, Ernie Els

A blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and Viognier from in and around the Stellenbosch region.

Perhaps the best Big Easy yet! Quite perfumed and fittingly complex, the palate is alive with chocolate, spice and confectionary cherries. A peppery nuance adds further character, all framed by a fine structure and juicy core.

Technical analysis

ALCOHOL

14.7 %

RESIDUAL SUGAR

3.3 g/L

pH

3.68

ACIDITY

5.9 g/L

ORIGIN

South Africa

WINEMAKER

Louis Strydom

VARIETY

Red Blend

HARVEST DATE

March 2015

FINED USING

Egg white

TIME IN OAK

14 months

SULPHUR

Total: 77 Free: 34

MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION

Yes

CLOSURE

Screw top

BOTTLE SIZE

75cl

REGION

Western Cape

Vintage conditions

The 2015 vintage will be remembered as one of the driest and earliest in years, with a somewhat smaller wine grape harvest promising exceptional wines. Warm weather in August resulted in earlier bud break, after which a warm, dry and windy summer kept vineyard growth under control and accelerated ripening by approximately two weeks. The dry weather also led to one of the healthiest seasons in years, with almost no losses due to diseases or rot. With the absence of the usual heat waves in most regions, cooler than usual weather in February was ideal for ripening and harvesting. Lower temperatures at night during this time contributed towards good flavour development in the white wines. Although somewhat smaller, this was one of the best, if not the best, harvests in years.

Vinification details

On the sorting table, all excess stalks and inferior berries were carefully removed. Grape bunches were gently destalked and lightly crushed before fermentation took place in 7-ton, open-top stainless steel tanks. The wines were pumped-over and punched-down manually five times per day to ensure maximum colour extraction from the skins. After primary fermentation the maceration period was 10 – 16 days before pressing. Each variety was maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels before blending and eventual bottling.

Awards

Veritas 2016: Double Gold
DWWA 2017: Silver

Green credentials

Accredited Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) estate.

Have a trade enquiry?
Contact us to discuss

Easy in the mouth with plenty of dusky black plum fruit, mixed with sage and white pepper on the finish. This is a fine 'Big Easy'.

eRobertParker.com

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Big Easy Red Blend, Ernie Els

A blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and Viognier from in and around the Stellenbosch region.

Plenty of kirsch, black and red fruits lead to pain grillé notes and hints of Asian spice. Medium bodied and yet densely fruited, Big Easy by Ernie Els Red Blend finishes with macaroon nuts and sweet red cherries. Fresh, velvety and delicious in its youth!

Technical analysis

ALCOHOL

14.4 %

RESIDUAL SUGAR

3.4 g/L

pH

3.67

ACIDITY

5.8 g/L

ORIGIN

South Africa

WINEMAKER

Louis Strydom

VARIETY

Red Blend

HARVEST DATE

March 2014

FINED USING

Egg white

TIME IN OAK

14 months

SULPHUR

Total: 101 Free: 42

MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION

Yes

CLOSURE

Screw top

BOTTLE SIZE

75cl

REGION

Western Cape

Vintage conditions

Cool, wet weather at the start of the 2014 growing season led to relatively high incidence of disease and crop losses early on in the season in some of Ernie Els’ red wine areas. Thereafter, favourable climatic conditions improved for flowering and good berry set ensued. Ideal dry and moderate conditions reigned during ripening in January and mid-February after which a warm period accelerated ripening and resulted in great pressure on harvest intakes. Moderate weather conditions during the harvest season contributed to intense red wines.

Vinification details

On the sorting table, all excess stalks and inferior berries were carefully removed. Grape bunches were gently destalked and lightly crushed before fermentation took place in 7-ton, open-top stainless steel tanks. The wines were pumped-over and punched-down manually five times per day to ensure maximum colour extraction from the skins. After primary fermentation the maceration period was 10 – 16 days before pressing. Each variety was maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels before blending and eventual bottling.

Green credentials

Accredited Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) estate.

Have a trade enquiry?
Contact us to discuss