Journey's End Revamps its Range of Wines

Journey’s End, one of South Africa’s most sustainable wineries, is revamping its range of wines to give clear differentiation between them.


Journey's End | House and Leisure

Looking for a new favourite wine can be a daunting task, especially when faced with a shelf filled with hundreds of different brands.

We tend to gravitate towards the bottles with interesting labels that pique our interest, picking up those bottles to see if they contain what we are craving. In short, standing out from the crowd is a vital part of getting your wine off the shelf – which is why  Journey's End winery has decided to set themselves apart by revamping the look and feel of their range of wines. 

Journey’s End, owned by the Gabb family, is one of South Africa’s most sustainable and experimental wineries. It produces three wine ranges, namely 'Tales' , 'V' and 'Precision', and each has their own style within the brand. When fully completed, the revamp will create clear differentiation between the three series, while maintaining a consistent theme across the family of wines.

The Tales range of wines has been the first to be transformed, and its new look is more playful and fun. 

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'Tales' consists of four wines: a Sauvignon Blanc, a Chardonnay, a Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier blend and a Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc blend. The new labels reflect the quirky names of the wines and help illustrate the story behind each one. The labels are simple yet striking, in white with graphic black prints, and have bold fonts with a small illustration that speaks to the name of the wine. 

Weather Station Sauvignon Blanc 

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This varietal was named after the Weerstasie Kloon (Weather Station Clone) in Stellenbosch where the SB11 Sauvignon Blanc clone was first propagated in the 1920s before a resurgence in the late 1970s. Today, this site is where the Stellenbosch wine campus is located, and this was Journey's End's way of paying tribute to the origins of Sauvignon Blanc locally. 

On the label, a weather vane is placed above the words Weather Station. The wine itself is fresh, fruity and complex, with hints of melon and grapefruit on a bed of apple and pear. The 2018 vintage shows ripe and full fruit flavours that come together in a rounded finish. 

Haystack Chardonnay

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Before modern farming practices, winemakers would plant wheat between the rows of vines to entice all the aphids and flies to land on that crop instead of the vines.

This practice is honoured with the Haystack Chardonnay. As a sustainable, biodynamic estate, Journey's End makes use of natural pest controls that are similar to the wheat method. They have a pair of eagle owls on the farm who keep the vineyards free of rodents, for example, which is why this label has an owl on it.

This wine also pays homage to the environment in the bottle: a wooded Chardonnay, the wine displays a nice balance between oak and fruit, with citrus and melon notes that are subtly overlayed with savoury biscuit flavours. 

ALSO READ: Biodynamic Winemaking: The What the Who the How

The Huntsman Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier 

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From paying homage to the art of winemaking to remembering the origins of Journey's End farm, The Huntsman Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier gets its name from the original kennels the Gabb family found on their farm dating back to 1822. These were the remains of kennels where hunting hounds had been kept, and now this is the site of the Journey's End winery buildings.

This Shiraz-dominant blend is full-bodied and smooth, with notes of fruit and herbs on the nose, and flavours of red fruit and spice on the palate. 

Pastor’s Blend

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A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, this wine was named after the reverend from the local village of Sir Lowry’s Pass, who regularly delivers Sunday communion at the foot of the Journey’s End vineyard. The estate has embarked on a number of community support and development programmes with local pastors, including offering pensioners' lunches and contributing to a new village sports hall.

Pastor's Blend consists of classic Bordeaux varietals that come together harmoniously. Ready for drinking now, the wine shows plums, berries and spice. 

Next Steps In the Journey's End Revamp

Now that the Tales series has its new look, we can expect the new-look V Series and Precision Series later in 2019. Rollo Gabb, the managing director at Journey’s End, says, 'In addition to the new branding, we have also been very busy in the vineyard and winery, focussing on environmental changes and new innovations.'

Journey’s End is the second South African vineyard to become solar-powered, and it farms sustainably or biodynamically across all its vineyards. It is also employing innovative methods with wasted grape stalks, which are mixed with chicken manure, hay and lime to form a fermented compost. 

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