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Sunday, 13 February 2022

Journey’s End Spekboom Sauvignon Blanc 2021

A new Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa's Journey's End

Journey’s End are launching a new wine, Spekboom Sauvignon Blanc, and it's as good as the rest of their range.

Journey's End - the winery

Journey's End was the final of a series of businesses founded by Shropshire-born Roger Gabb in the late 1990s; located in Stellenbosch and just 6km from the coast, it is cooled by the Indian and Atlantic oceans. As a result, the wines have a freshness that is more European than South African.

Gabb is now Chairman and son Rollo runs the business "making extremely good wine sold all over the world".


Journey’s End has always been wholly committed to sustainably and ethically producing wines; their new wine is named after the vineyard’s latest green project, the recent planting of 6,000 spekboom plants on the farm.

The wine’s namesake, spekboom (Portulacaria afra, also known as ‘Elephant Bush’) is a succulent, native to South Africa.

The team at Journey’s End is committed to reducing carbon emissions and Spekboom, is widely considered to be a ‘wonder plant’ due to its impressive abilities to absorb carbon dioxide; one hectare of mature spekboom thicket can up to 7.5 times more than the equivalent area of mature woodland.

Winemaking style

When I reviewed four Journey's End wines in 2021, a common feature to them all was that they improved significantly with aeration. On a call with the winemaker, I learnt that they are made in an extremely low-oxygen environment to preserve the fruit aromas of the wine. This is a play towards US and Asian palates, who tend to emphasise freshness of primary fruit over the savoury complexity that is more associated with European preferences, and certainly my own.

As a result, I found most of the wines the wines opening up and generally still improving even after 5 days of first opening, especially the reds and the more ambitious whites.

In the case of both the Weather Station Sauvignon and this Spekboom, the low-oxygen regime accentuates the delicate aromatics of the grape, so it drinks well on first pouring and doesn't actively require time in the decanter.

Journey’s End Spekboom Sauvignon Blanc 2021 (£10, Sainsbury's)

Made from 100% sustainably-sourced Sauvignon Blanc, it spends five months on the lees for savoury complexity

floral and aromatic zesty grapefruit and tropical citrus; melon and pineapple fruit with zippy lemon-lime and fresh geen herbs; supple, harmonious and fresh with saline minerality


Match with garlic-and-herb soft white cheeses, white fish in a herby broth or aromatic chicken salads.

Other reviews:

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