Sakkie Mouton, Koekenaap and West Coast Wine
West Coast Wine
Koekenaap is a small town located on the West Coast of South Africa, situated in the Olifants River Valley. The region has a long history of wine-making, dating back to the early 18th century. Moreover, the West Coast of South Africa is renowned for its unique microclimate. Contributing to the production of exceptional, highly sought-after wines. Chenin Blanc dominates in the West Coast Wine Scene.
Various factors have shaped the wine-making tradition in the West Coast region of South Africa. First by the Cape’s Dutch settlers. Leading into the 19th century, wine production had become a significant industry. However, it was only in the early 20th century that the region began to establish itself as a serious wine-producing area.
The West Coast of South Africa has a unique microclimate. The cool Atlantic Ocean to the west and the warm, dry interior to the east. The region’s climate is characterised by hot summers and cold winters. Rainfall occurs during the winter months. These climatic conditions create the ideal environment for the cultivation of a variety of grapes, including Chenin Blanc, Colombar, Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz and Pinotage.
Minerality is the West Coast wine signature, a distinct kelp and sea saltiness flavour. Moreover, the soil in the region is predominantly shale-based. Furthermore, the cool ocean breeze contributes to the region’s unique flavour profiles. Grapes develop a crisp freshness and high acidity that balances the richness from the baking heat of the area.
Sakkie Mouton has risen to become one of the most prominent figures in the West Coast Wine scene. Mouton, who studied at Elsenburg, is a young and ambitious winemaker. Sakkie Mouton began his career in the mid-2010s producing wines for already established wine estates such as Muratie. However, in 2018 Mouton released the first wine under his own label – Revenge of the Crayfish. Moreover, a Chenin Blanc made from fruit from Koekenaap. Sakkie’s wine quickly gained a reputation for its exceptional quality and out-of-the-box style. Subsequently, Sakkie has released a myriad of different wines from the region. A yearly changing white blend called Full on Misfit. A Vermentino called Sand Erf. A Muscat d’Alexandrie called South of No Man’s Land as well as a Colombar called Vloedvlak. There are multiple other wines that are in the pipeline to be released too.
Mouton is known for his hands-on approach to winemaking – close attention to detail and an interest in experimenting. Sakkie’s wines are characterised by their complexity. Each vintage displays a truly unique expression of terroir.
Snap up whatever bottles of these wines you can find, they are superb, rare and ageable! Everything a collector and wine-lover would desire. The first vintage – 2020 – now has some age on it and is drinking superbly. Meanwhile, there is a drop left of the current release – 2022.
PS: Have a look at Greg Sherwood’s MW fantastic write-ups on Sakkie’s wines, they are well-written and very insightful.