Klein, Constantia Vin de Constance 2008 (Magnum) comes in its original wooden presentation box with info – bottle 1076 of 1506 - a South African sweet white on a par with Bordeaux's great Château d'Yquem.
Klein, which benefits from a maritime climate beside Table Mountain, was derelict when owner Duggie Jooste bought it in 1980, but the estate soon became a beacon of quality (under Duggie and winemaker Adam Mason) that inspired a wine-producing renaissance in the region. Klein was later sold to a Czech millionaire and then merged with Anwilka (of which Hubert de Brouard and Bruno Prats are shareholders, no less). The current winemaking team of Stiaan Cloete (whose forefathers owned the estate in the 19th century) and Matthew Day continue the excellent work, crafting world class wines at very reasonable prices, employing an expert team of pickers who harvest up to 25 times a year to select the best bunches. Some fermentation takes place on the skins before ageing in new and aged Hungarian and French oak, which add distinct spice and clove characteristics.
Throughout Constantina's illustrious history, vines were first planted in 1685, famous imbibers have included Jane Austen and Napoleon Bonaparte, the latter who often enjoyed a bottle of ‘vin de Constance’ daily and is rumoured to have requested a glass on his deathbed.