Mullineux & Leeu Family Wines is one of the stand-out producers in South Africa's budding Swartland region. Winemakers Chris and Andrea Mullineux’s ambition is to bottle wines that are a true expression of the Swartland, and all steps of their winemaking process are taken with this in mind. They work closely with a select group of growers who follow sustainable, reasoned farming practices, as well as owning vineyards at their Roundstone Farm in Riebeeksrivier.
In the cellar, apart from minimal amounts of sulphur, nothing is added to or removed from the wine. They do not make use of any yeasts, acids, tannins, enzymes, or fining and filtering agents. “Leeu” (Afrikaans for “lion”) was added to the name recently to recognise the contribution of a new investor to the project.
Apart from their wonderful Syrah, Chenin Blanc-based white blend and a super-rich Straw Wine made from air-dried Chenin Blanc, fermented and matured in old barriques, Mullineux now has a range of spectacular single-terroir Syrah and Chenin Blanc wines, each of which illustrates the amazing potential of the differing Swartland soils. Volumes of the single-vineyard wines are tiny, so availability is extremely limited.
Since starting the estate in 2007, Chris and Andrea Mullineux have earned a reputation for producing wines of fine quality. Based in the Swartland, they work predominately with Chenin Blanc and Syrah from old vines. This wine is the first vintage from a sister range of wines, under the Leeu Passant label. The Dry Red is their take on 1950s and ’60s Cape blends, using old-vine fruit from heritage vineyards in Wellington, Franschhoek and Stellenbosch. Deep ruby in colour, the aromas nod towards pepper and spice, with green herbs, ripe plum and black cherry. The palate is opulent with plenty of fruit, a vein of chalky minerality and impressive ripeness. It still manages to display an air of restraint and control that highlight the wine’s impeccable pedigree.