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Crystallum `Mabalel` Pinot Noir

Walker Bay


Crystallum Wines is a boutique wine operation started in 2007 by brothers Peter-Allan and Andrew Finlayson.  The brothers are third generation wine producers and sons of South Africa’s Pinot Noir and Chardonnay pioneer, Peter Finlayson...

The estate is situated in the cool Walker Bay region, on South Africa’s south coast around the town of Hermanus in the Hemel en Aarde valley. Production at Crystallum is tiny at the moment. The brothers’ focus on sustainability runs from the vineyard through to the winery. A new straw bale winery is being built using recycled steel, clay and stone from the property and straw bales from a farm just up the road. They have also used a recycled paper and clay mix for plastering the walls, creating an entirely natural wall that should provide a constant, cool and naturally regulated environment for the wines.

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The Mabalel Pinot Noir is crafted from fruit grown at high altitudes, 700 metres above sea level. The vineyard rests in what resembles a volcanic crater surrounded by some of the Cape’s highest mountain peaks that are regularly covered by snow during winter.

Vintage information

Very wet conditions in late January and early February led to a delayed ripening and extended hang times. The wines are wonderfully aromatic with high natural acidity and great fruit concentration.


Mabalel 2013 was fermented using only native yeasts and unlike the other Crystallum Cuvees, the fruit was completely de-stemmed. The total time in tank was 28 days with a 14 day post-fermentation maceration. The wine was then transferred to barrel where it remained for 11 months before bottling. Minimal sulphates were used in the making of this wine.

Tasting Notes

Lighter and more feminine than the other Crystallum Pinot Noirs. Dried flower petals, violets and bright cherry notes lead to an elegant and refined palate with very fine tannins and a fresh finish.

Vintage information

Vintage 2013
Grape varieties 100% Pinot Noir
Region Walker Bay
Winemaker Peter-Allan Finlayson
Alcohol (ABV) 13.5%
Acidity 5.2g/l
Residual Sugar 2.5g/l
Wine pH 3.59