Same old legends, wild claims and outrageous prices

South African wine announcement of the week (internationally at least, I haven’t seen it here) must undoubtedly be about the launch of G.2010. Huh? You might well blink in a fit of déja vu. This is indeed the wine that was launched ages ago, in October 2011 in fact, with a lot of badly written and occasionally untruthful PR, and an asking price of R2300 per bottle. Launch, unsurprisingly, to a great deal of disbelief. (I wrote somewhat scathingly about the whole business here.) But apparetnly it’s going to be now launched in the UK in June, and in Germany later this month at Prowein.

4G Wines SA_GThe wine, made by “legendary” Giorgio dalla Cia for a Swiss-owned business, is (or was, tasted back then) a very pleasant Californian-cult-style red blend. Though without much room to fashionably invoke “terroir” as it seems to have been made from 12 vineyards across the Western Cape.

Only 3410 bottles were made, apparently. One doesn’t need to be very good at arithmetic to see that, if they still have enough bottles of the stuff to stage a re-launch 18 months later (and pour it at Prowein), sales must have been … well, pretty much as I’d have expected them to be for a wine that costs about seven times as much as Kanonkop Paul Sauer and that most serious wine people will not consider as good.

A press release did in fact claim that “the maiden vintage sells through very select channels globally” – perhaps just a little too select? It does seem that, no doubt despite a great deal of effort, they haven’t yet found a distributor in the United States, for example.

Decanter.com carries a piece on the “new” release (it looks much more like an advertorial than an article, incidentally – I didn’t know Decanter had sunk to that sort of thing). The price now quoted is 350 US dollars, or 250 British pounds, which means that the price has risen steeply while the wine has been languishing since it was first released.

But good, exciting news if you think that’s a bit pricey. Apparently a wine called The Echo of G 2010 “is soon to be released at 40% of the price of G.” Also, just to make you gnash your teeth with envy even more grindingly, we’re told that “an initial ‘Private Preview 2009’ has been made available to ‘friends and family only’”. Presumably it’s not considered sellable.

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