Le Bonheur

Le Bonheur 'The Trading Post' Bordeaux Blend 2019

Stellenbosch, South Africa

Blend: Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon | 13.5% ABV


Discover this pioneering, and classic Stellenbosch blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, and Cabernet Franc. Medium to full-bodied, exhibiting dense, red fruit and a smooth texture. The Merlot provides finesse and feminine elegance, supported by the bold structure and power of Cabernet Sauvignon. Lastly, Cabernet Franc lifts the blend with fragrant notes of lavender and dried herbs.

Guide to icons

It opens with lashings of raspberry and black plum with some smoky tobacco notes. The palate is full-bodied but with elegance and silky tannins.

Service: Serve at 15 to 18°C.

Food Pairing: Excellent with beef, lamb, pork, game, poultry, cheese, pasta in tomato sauce and vegetarian dishes.

Le Bonheur winemaker, William Wilkinson, has gained a reputation as one of South Africa’s most creative and awarded winemakers. With a forever inquisitive approach to viticulture, William individually vinifies different batches, which results in site-specific building blocks, to create the authentic and classic wines. William is a former South African champion body boarder and, like the estate, still has an untamed, wild side.

With a history dating back to the 1700’s, Le Bonheur is the gateway to South Africa’s most renowned wine-producing region. It is nestled between the magnificent Simonsberg Mountains and Klapmuts Hill, with altitudes of up to 450m, aspects, and slopes all along Klapmuts Hill and four main soil types.

Le Bonheur has an enviable terroir, with unmatched diversity. The 163-hectare estate has 71ha planted to vineyards. The vineyards face north, east, and south-east, at altitudes from 200m to 400m above sea level. The main soil types are Hutton, Tukulu Glenrosa, Klapmuts, and Kroonstad.

2* (Moving on up)

Le Bonheur Wine Estate, located in South Africa and established in 1977, has been under the current ownership for 7 years. William Wilkinson, the winemaker, has been at the forefront of implementing sustainable practices.

The estate spans over 56 hectares, with 33% dedicated to vine cultivation and a significant 47% maintained as natural or semi-natural woodland. They boast an annual production volume of 30,000 hectolitres and employ between 11 and 20 permanent staff members, with a larger temporary workforce during peak season.

Le Bonheur is committed to ecological preservation through biological control and the use of natural fertilizers. They prioritize water efficiency through drip irrigation and soil moisture monitoring, adhere to IPW sustainability guidelines, and engage in biodiversity protection by installing owl houses. With an eye on the future, they aim to establish new plantations and transition to cleaner vineyards free from herbicide resistance.

The estate faces challenges like climate change, rising production costs, and a global decline in wine consumption. While they do not have a carbon reduction plan, they are noticing early rainfall and cooler climates affecting the ripening of late varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon. Their approach to winemaking focuses on understanding terroir, unique sites, and gentle extraction to produce elegant, terroir-expressive wines.

Le Bonheur Wine Estate is in the process of converting to organic farming and follows some biodynamic principles. They are also a Fair Trade certified estate and part of the Biodiversity & Wine Initiative. Although they do not have a comprehensive carbon footprint analysis, they engage actively with their local community through Fairtrade initiatives and alien vegetation clearing, especially along the Fynbos reserve on the estate.

The estate's commitment to sustainability, evidenced by comprehensive objectives and continuous reporting against targets, has earned them a 2* "Moving on Up" sustainability rating. Their journey includes using ethical sourcing criteria, offering fair pay, and providing safety measures and training to their staff. With strong female representation in leadership roles, Le Bonheur Wine Estate is setting a positive example in the wine industry for sustainable practices.

Red | Still | 75cl | 13.5% ABV | Contains Sulphites

Recognition: Vintage 2018 - Veritas Awards: Double Gold, Platter's South African Wine Guide: 4*

Cellaring: Though it is drinking well now, it would benefit from decanting at its young age.

Vinification: Grapes were harvested by hand at optimal ripeness. Each vineyard was individually vinified. Once the grapes were crushed, the mash was cooled and fermentation took place over 8 days at 28° C. Upon completion of malolactic fermentation the wine was matured in 300-litre barrels for 18 months, using a combination of 65% new and 35% second-fill French oak.

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