KWV is relaunching it’s The Mentors range with a new simplified and more premium label.

The new look is also designed to help differentiate between the permanent wines in the collection and special releases.

The Mentors range has been created as a premier showcase of South Africa’s diverse terroir, involving strict grape selection and a high standard of viticultural and oenological expertise. It also has a dedicated cellar, which is separated from the main KWV operations.

The Mentors is described as being “all about small batch wines; the winemaking team harnessing the conditions in the vineyard and the truly refined art of winemaking to craft a range of superior wines”.

The Mentors wines are produced by winemaker Izele van Blerk. The wines were first bottled in 2006 and were launched globally in 2009. There are eight in the range: Perold, Chenin Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Petit Verdot, Pinotage, Cabernet France, Orchestra and Canvas.

Van Blerk told DRN: “People ask if I can produce more volume but I say no, because this brand is all about quality. We allocate it per country, per sku, and if there is no more stock then it is gone.”

In addition, Van Blerk and her team experiment with new varietals, such as this year’s Carmenere, carrying the Wine of Origin Stellenbosch and innovative blends from every harvest for special releases. They take their cue from the vineyards of the Cape Winelands, in deciding which wines deserve a space in The Mentors cellar.

Van Blerk said: “Carmernere will be a limited edition of 1,300 bottles in total. We will chose a different wine every single year, so next year we are looking at Nebbiolo, which will be like a Barolo, and then after that it might be Sangiovese or Tannat. We will never produce more than 1,300 bottes and the prices will be higher than those in the normal range.

“My focus at the KWV The Mentors Cellar is maintaining the high standard of producing leading, multi-regional wines from the best fruit South Africa has to offer. Working with grapes of this quality and from regions all over the Western Cape, makes it very exciting. Grapes for our Mentors wines are handpicked and carefully selected before blending to ensure the wines meet our expectations.”

The new look is being rolled out from the 2017 vintage, which has just arrived on UK shores. The range is distributed through North South Wines.