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Country of Origin & Region


South Africa, Western Cape region

Niels Verburg

Niels Verburg Shiraz 2004

91pts Stephen Tanzer International Wine Cellar 2007 Ruby-red. Subdued, cool aromas of black raspberry, dark chocolate and mint, lifted by cinnamon spice...

Tasting Notes

Are you a Luddite? On a recent journey to South Africa this was one of the real finds of the trip. This could easily be one of the better finds of the year for us. With production at around 800 cases this is a hand crafted wine in the truest sense. Due to trademark issues, this wine, known as Luddite in its native South Africa, has been labeled under winemaker/owner Niels Verburg’s name for the US market. This will be a label to keep a watchful eye on over the coming years.
There is a beautiful lift to the nose, clove, spices, inflections of white pepper and coffee grounds with smoked game and bacon fat sweetness folded into a gorgeous sweet black berry fruit base. The palate has a seamless texture, medium fuller bodied, with a suppleness to match, round but with excellent length to the flavors backed with ripe, smooth tannins on the lingering finish. This has some serious pedigree and showcases the new direction towards premium, high quality wines that are now coming out of the Cape.
Winemaker’s Tasting Notes: Deep purple and garnet hues. Rich welcoming bouquet of dark summer fruits, nutmeg, cinnamon and toasted coconut. Palate has plums and spice on entry, followed by a richness of natural fruit sweetness. All these flavours are backed by fine tannins and balanced wood use.

Awards, Reviews and other Notes

91pts Stephen Tanzer International Wine Cellar 2007
Ruby-red. Subdued, cool aromas of black raspberry, dark chocolate and mint, lifted by cinnamon spice. Dense, suave and pliant. Plump and deep but not at all a blockbuster (it’s actually a moderate 13.6% alcohol). This spreads out impressively to coat the palate, while maintaining good definition to its dark fruit flavors. Finishes with very fine tannins and subtle length. More sophisticated and graceful than the first vintages of this wine, which is bottled under the Luddite Wines label in South Africa. This spent 60 days on the skins after the end of the fermentation.

89 pts Wine Spectator Magazine
Really juicy with enticing dark plum, blackberry and licorice flavors, backed by a nice briary hint on the lengthy finish.

88 pts Wine Enthusiast Magazine
From the former Beaumont winemaker Niels Verburg, this cool and collected Shiraz has lovely layers of mint, chocolate and spice, with raspberry fruit that is expressive but elegant. There's length and body but the wine has a tempered touch.

4 1/2 Stars John Platter South Africa Wine Guide
Pure-fruited & classically styled, unshowy yet intense. 04 more peppery, silkier & more concentrated then 03, but in the same seamless mould. Fairly moderate alcohol (14%) & wood regime. Idiosyncratically & sucessfully draws on vineyards from Mulberry.

Winemaker Notes

Viticultural practices:
Yields per acre: 8 tons/ha
Cases produced: 2500 cases
Appellation: Western Cape
Filtration and fining: No Fining, light filtration
Varietal composition: 100% Shiraz
Wood treatment: 75% French Oak. 25% American & 25% new
Length of barrel maturation: 12 months in barrel
Other Viticultural Notes: The 2004 vintage was characterized by long periods of warm weather during ripening, resulting in full fruit driven wines with ripe tannins. Grapes were selected from 4 vineyard sites, Malmesbury, Helderburg, Bottelry and for the 1st time our own fruit from Luddite farm Bot River. AVERAGE ANALYSIS OF FRUIT AT HARVEST: 25 Baling; ph 3.65; TA 6.5
Winemaker's notes: Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks with 4hrly pump overs. We used cooler fermentation temperatures (24C) to preserve and retain all the fruit complexity of this vintage. We gave 60 days post maceration on the skins to ensure a good tannin structure to balance the fruit. Malolactic fermentation took place on the skins were after the wine was pressed and put into 80% French Oak and 20% American Oak barrels. 25% of these barrels were new with the rest being 2nd, 3rd and 4th fill. The wine remained in barrels for one year after which the wine was filtered and bottled.

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Chemical Analysis




Alcohol: 13.6 %
pH: 3.8
Total Acid: 5g/l
Residual Sugar: 2g/l
Free/Total Sulfur: FSO2 27 ppm TSO2 90 ppm




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