Cape Crusaders and burnt rubber

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Is what I describe as a ‘burnt rubber’ aroma or flavour in some – mainly less expensive – South African red wines a figment of my imagination? If not, what causes it? These questions have bugged me for a long time and I know I am not alone.

Earlier this week a tasting and discussion in London for UK wine journalists with a group of top South African winemakers, described by Chris Williams of the Foundry/Meerlust as “some of the most self-critical in the industry”, gave me a chance to scratch this itch. It was far from the only point...