GS Cabernet 1966 (Part 1)

If ever there was a true unicorn wine from South Africa it would have to be the 1966 GS Cabernet. What has been written about the wine leaves one with more questions than answers. Other than repeating the same unconfirmed information, it is not clear whether anyone has in fact done any primary research on the wine. Most intriguing is what Romi van der Merwe wrote in 2000 in “The Magic Blend”, that:

“Spies produced some outstanding experimental wines that are much appreciated to this day by a fortunate few collectors, notably the GS Cabernet 1962, 1966 and 1968, although these were never released onto the general market.”

This statement begs the following questions:

  • What was the experiment? How different was it to the conventional way of making wine at the time?
  • Was Spies making the wine for Monis (where he was employed at the time) or was it a private concern?
  • Did he not keep record of the method(s) he employed? And if they existed where would those records be? In the company archives perhaps?

No doubt the experiment was a huge success and being lauded by prominent critics as the best wine ever to come out of South Africa the GS is without a doubt our National Treasure of wine and the secret behind its making deserves to be unearthed.



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