Pontac Manor Wines

A history of good food and good wine

In the 1700's, Pontac Estate was one of the pioneers in winemaking in the Paarl region. At that time, under the ownership of the de Labuscaigne family, immigrants from the Bordeaux region in France, the estate produced its own 'Pontac' wine.

As a young man, the estate's founder - Pierre de Labuscaigne - greatly admired the well-known de Pontac family, of Château Haut-Brion in his home region of Bordeaux. He was himself not born into great means, but after embarking on his life-changing journey to South Africa, through hard work, determination and some luck was finally in a position to realise his life-long dream of producing his own wine. He named his family estate after his source of inspiration, the de Pontac family.

At that time, the enterprising de Pontac family had its own dining establishment in London - actually, the city's first restaurant - called the "Enseigne de Pontac" or Pontack's Head, which became in its time, the most fashionable place in London. The venue was opened by François-Auguste de Pontac, who brought along Haut-Brion's chef to create more elaborate cuisine than could be had in the mere taverns of the time. The enterprise soon became a roaring success, and provided the perfect setting for promoting the family's wine, surely the earliest example of wine marketing.

The wheel turns full circle:

Drawing its name from the dePontac family of old as well as from the South African wine estate that was once named after them, Pontac Manor Wines once again grace our tables at the Cape, in the age-old wine-making traditions.

Pontac Manor Cabernet Sauvignon 2003, is a limited edition, handcrafted vintage of the finest quality.

Winner of a Silver Veritas Award, this wine has been ranked first amongst 43 other fine South African wines by the expert "Wine of the Month Club" panel. The wine evinces a harmony between strength and finesse, delighting the connoisseur with its distinctive earthy character and just the merest trace of pencil shavings. Strong berry scents and a hint of overripe bananas greet the palate with an eager playfulness that ripens into the light, yet lingering aftertaste of an angel's kiss. This wine goes well with red meats and veal, yet is also an excellent complement to game-fish and fowl.

For a perfect pairing, try Pontac Manor Cabernet Sauvignon with our signature dish in The Restaurant at Pontac, the classic venison and chocolate chili sauce.

Pontac Manor Sauvignon Blanc 2005 is an easy drinking wine that ‘dances on the tongue’. It has a crisp, green and lively taste, with echoes of gooseberry, bell-pepper and asparagus. A versatile wine, it goes well with fish, shell-fish, white meats, tangy pastas, asparagus and salads. Drink young!

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Pontac Manor Wine is available in The Restaurant at Pontac or on order from the Manor House reception desk. It is an example of the exciting boutique wines that have started making their appearance on the Cape wine scene in recent years. Drink and enjoy!

WINE OF THE MONTH CLUB RATING – RESERVE LIST

Out of a SELECTION OUT OF 43 cabernet sauvignon wines, Pontac Manor Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 scored the highest rating and was placed on the WINE OF THE MONTH Club’s exclusive RESERVE list in 2005.

The Wine of the Month Club panel consists of: David Biggs, Colin Collard, Claude Felbert, Margaret Fundira, Mike Louw, Tony Mossop, PJ “Buks” Nel, Mark Norrish, Christine Rudman, Irina von Holdt.

The following information was published in GOOD TASTE magazine (August edition), as the result of a tasting by an expert panel of wine judges.

Pontac Cabernet Sauvignon description: beautifully evolved classy and classic bouquet shows ripe mulberry fruit with pencil shavings and cedar of fine oak.

Dry and full-bodied, the elegant fruit with its deep berry flavours has been carefully disciplined by the oak.

Facts: Store between 16-19 C
Serve with roast deboned shoulder of lamb with herbed stuffing
Cellaring: drink now, or over next three years