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  • Jancis Robinson
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  • Jancis Robinson
9 Oct 2007

How could I possibly ignore this outfit, a black empowerment enterprise run entirely by women (from the Khayelitsha township)? Ses'fikele apparently means 'we have arrived'. I first tasted their wines last year but this one leapt off the tasting table at Marks & Spencer's display of autumn wines last week. It was subsequently given a sizeable push by one of Ses'kifile's staff who has been on a six week internship at M&S. I asked her what she had learnt. She smiled at one of the M&S buyers and promised, "now we'll call the shots!"


Ses'fikile Rain Song Chardonnay 2007 Bonnievale/Elim is also highly topical as its wine are made by the energetic Bruce Jack who has just taken over a position of enormous power in South Africa, as announced last night in my little scooplet.


This wonderfully fresh, energetic yet fully ripe and round Chardonnay is boosted by a slug of Sauvignon Blanc, variously reported as 5 and 15%. Whatebver it is, it is a thoroughly successful recipe.  


Ses'fikele also sell a Ses'fikile Chardonnay 2006 Swartland which is rather fuller and very winning. I see what I actually wrote as a particularly female tasting note on this breezy wine is "Direct and free and no bra! Great for now." I hope you can understand what I mean - that the wine is somehow uninhibited - and that this will not be misinterpreted.


The Rain Song bottling is £6.99 in 150 M&S stores in the UK and is also apparently exported to Finland and the LCBO in Canada.