91 Points "Shows a mature edge, with graham cracker and ginger notes along the edges, featuring singed hazelnut, matchstick, glazed pear, apricot and green fig accents. The lush, spice-tinged finish has depth and cut. Distinctive."
92 Points "The 2010 Chardonnay, fermented and matured in French oak (50% new) has a vivacious nose of lime, melon and tangerine with superb definition and sense of joie-de-vivre. The palate is medium-bodied with fresh acidity, a vibrant seam of crisp lemon peel that leads to a refined nose with subtle tropical fruit that shimmer with excitement. This is a superb Chardonnay from one of South Africa’s grandees and winemaker, Chris Williams. Drink now-2016."
Highly Recommended S "Glazed pear, apple and hazelnut combine with lemon zest, mineral and matchstick notes in this rich, chiseled wine. The long, vibrant, mouthwatering finish brings you back for more."
92 points "With glazed pear, apple and hazelnut combined with lemon zest, mineral and matchstick notes, this is both rich and chiseled, with a long, vibrant, mouthwatering finish that brings you back for more. Big improvement here since winemaker Chris Williams took over in 2004."
"At Meerlust on a warm day just after the harvest in March, I tasted the estate's four wines: a Chardonnay, a Merlot, a Pinot Noir and the Rubicon blend. All were excellent, but the Rubicon and the Chardonnay -- with a creamy finish that reminded me of some of the best French white Burgundies -- were my favorites. Meerlust, which means "love of the sea," is within range of cooling ocean breezes, giving its Chardonnay a crispness that can't be found in wines made just a few kilometers farther inland."
88 Points "Heavy notes of vanilla and caramel, char and menthol herald the oak in this wine. But on the palate, the oak is well integrated with white stone fruit and creme brulee flavors. Seemingly soft at first, this wine has a strong, fruity core that carries it right through the buttery finish."
89 points "Saturated deep red. Complex nose melds plum, mocha, menthol and chocolate. Dense, supple and serious, with tobacco, earth and mineral tones to go with the plummy fruit. Soil-driven and slightly rustic merlot in an old-fashioned style but with strong material. Finishes with broad, palate-dusting tannins and good persistence."
89 Points "Offers spice, savory, tea leaf, dried cherry and red currant aromas and flavors, with the tea edge and a blood orange hint holding sway on the elegant but persistent finish. Drink now through 2016."
89 Points "The 2012 Pinot Noir is raised in 60% Allier French oak. It offers an elegant bouquet with light strawberry and raspberry scents that is well-defined and carries the oak well. The palate is medium-bodied with light tannin, clean fresh Pinot fruit, and a smooth, harmonious finish. This is a lovely young, unpretentious Pinot Noir to enjoy over the next couple of years."
89 Points "The 2010 Pinot Noir is raised in French oak for 11 months (70% new). It offers a more fruit-driven bouquet of ripe redcurrant and red cherry fruit with fine delineation. The palate is a little hard on the entry with slightly aggressive acidity. However, the finish shows fine crispness with lively Morello and orange peel on the smoky finish. Drink now-2016."
88 Points "A broad, earthy style, offering mulled cherry and dark spice notes mingling with a hint of briar that lengthens the slightly edgy finish. For fans of the old school."
89 points "Medium red. Redcurrant, tobacco, menthol, spices and earth on the nose; smells like a California pinot from the '70s. Savory and soil-driven, with a penetrating quality to the flavors of strawberry, redcurrant, smoke, tobacco and earth. Not a particularly fruity style but finishes aromatic and suave, with fine-grained tannins and very good definition and lift."
89 Points "A blend of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot that matured for 24 months in 60% new oak from Nevers, the 2010 Rubicon has a well-defined bouquet with blackberry mixed with blueberry fruit, a touch of Pauillac-like mint developing in the glass, but remaining quite backward despite aeration in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with firm tannins in the mouth matched by good acidity. It is structured and quite masculine, the tobacco-stained Cabernet driving this along with the Cabernet Franc imparting a more savory element towards the finish."
91 Points "Distinctive, with singed iron and lilac hints, followed by a mix of boysenberry, blackberry and black currant fruit flavors. Dried star anise, cinnamon and black tea notes fill the finish, with iron-coated grip underneath. Tastes like a meeting of Cabernet and Nebbiolo. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2020."
92 Points "It has a well-defined bouquet of blackberry, black truffle and tar. The palate is well balanced with supple tannins. There is a core of earthy red berry fruit infused with allspice, cumin and a touch of sage. The finish is very well defined and long. This is a far better Rubicon than the 2007, one worthy of its iconic status. Drink 2013-2020+"
92 Points Cellar Selection #100 of Top 100 Cellar Selections -- "One of the best vintages of Rubicon to date, and for the price it’s a fantastic value that’s great for building up your cellar. Right now, the wine is still young and tight, with firm, gripping tannins that need some time to mellow. Fortunately, there’s a great concentrated black-fruit core and enough acidity alongside the tannins to support long-term aging. Spicy and earthy, with accents of black tea, cedar and crushed violets."
89+ Points "This is a nicely balanced and well-defined wine. Black cherries, medium-bodied with a touch of mint."
92+ Points "Bright, saturated ruby-red. Brooding aromas of cassis, dark chocolate, licorice, violet and pepper. Dense, broad and sweet, with youthful medicinal reserve to the intense flavors of dark berries, tobacco and spices. Already shows a plush texture but there's terrific sappy energy at the core. Finishes very long and aromatic, with fine, building tannins and the structure for long aging."
90 Points "Ripe and dense, but sleek and focused, with a lovely core of mulled black currant, warm fig paste and tobacco, laced with mouthwatering dark olive and iron notes that help the finish stretch out nicely. Has solid grip in reserve, too."
Paired with pistachio-stuffed Springbok wrapped in Prosciutto: "The sumptuous Meerlust 2006 Rubicon Bordeaux blend, with its cedar smoke, graphite and black fruit flavors, is a delicious accompaniment to the gamy, spicy and bitter chocolate notes in this dish."
"I particularly liked the '05 Rubicon, which we tasted from barrel. Rubicon is the estate’s flagship wine made from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. It was dark, loamy and powerful, with lots of tarry grip, but still had a vibrant, minerally spine. Kudos to this estate for updating its wines without losing its sense of place and history."
90 points "Intense, lingering aromas and flavors give this wine...a memorable edge. On the nose, a combination of savory spice and dark plum and chocolate lead, while the palate is rife with earthy spice, mint, cocoa and smoke. Complex but balanced and traditional, the wine will age well and pair well with complex, robust dishes."
"This is an elegant, Old World-style wine, with concentrated dark fruit, creme brulee, cigar box and spice hints integrated with savory loam. Lovely balance, lengthy finish."
90 points "Concentrated and grippy, with dark, roasted plum, black licorice, charcoal, mesquite and bittersweet cocoa notes. Traditional in vein, with an iron- and earth-filled finish that should soften nicely with cellaring. ...Drink now through 2013."
88(+?) "Bright, deep ruby-red. Medicinal dark berries, black cherry, cedar, licorice and tobacco on the old-fashioned nose. Juicy, tight and a bit ungiving, with still-youthful plum, bitter cherry and cedar flavors. Finishes with slightly tough, building tannins. This should evolve in a Bordeaux direction, showing earth, truffle, tobacco and underbrush as it unwinds in bottle. The Rubicon is one of South Africas most famous wines, and insiders report that subsequent vintages have moved toward a more pliant style."
94 points, #27 of "B “Over a quarter of a century ago, this was one of the first South African Bordeaux blends. It is still one of the best, a ripely tannic, firm wine that owes a lot to the structure given by the ripe grape from mature vines. Great acidity, great black currant fruits, and great style."--RV
4 Stars - Highly Rec "Delicate, sweet black fruit, with soft, unaggressive tannins."
90 Points "South Africa's lovely Bordeaux style blend; smooth and bright with fleshy plum and berry fruit."
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