Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

South African name for the distinctive red-fleshed teinturier du cher grape variety probably imported from south west france in the late 17th century. Widely planted until phylloxera devastated the Cape’s vineyards between 1866 and the 1880s, Pontac was superseded by higher-yielding and more fashionable varieties, although a vintage port-style wine was made from it as recently as 2008. While there are no longer any Pontac vineyards in South Africa, attempts are being made to produce virus-free material which, if successful, may herald its re-emergence.