Rüdger van Wyk is the breakout winemaker at Stark-Condé in Stellenbosch. In addition to Jancis’ praise, he won South Africa’s prestigious “Diners Club Young Winemaker of the Year” honor, and seen his wines at Stark-Conde featured in Wine Enthusiast’s ‘Top 100 Wines of the Year’ list.
But not so secretly, the joint venture he launched on the side with José Conde is what drives his passion– and the idea that the brand that he set out to provide, “great-quality at an amazing value” will become a worldwide hit propelling his brand, Kara-Tara into heights few South African producers ever reach on the international scale.
For so long, Oregon Pinots have in my opinion been dominating the new-world Pinot Noir scene, and making so many exciting wines. But with the wine economics in South Africa once again pushing product back to American shores, I’ve been blown away with the quality. Today’s Pinot Noir is a dead ringer for a $50 Oregon Pinot. It’s so fresh and fleshy with red and black fruits, currants, and a hint of bramble and sage on the finish. It’s pure, high-altitude, cool-climate Pinot Noir that will blow you away.
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91 Points, Neil Martin – Vinous
The 2019 Pinot Noir Kara-Tara has a fresh, pure bouquet of wild strawberry and red cherry scents that gain intensity with aeration. The palate is well balanced with a fine bead of acidity. Quite compact and concentrated for a Pinot, but it retains delineation on the chalky-textured finish. This is a very commendable, quite delicious Pinot Noir.
90 Points, Tim Atkin, MW – Decanter
Kara-Tara is the personal project of Rüdger van Wyk, the brilliantly talented young winemaker at Stark-Condé. Made from a combination of Elgin, Durbanville and Hemelen-Aarde Ridge fruit, it’s an appealing, medium-weight Pinot Noir with redcurrant and pomegranate flavours and some texture and spice from 15% whole bunches.