This is a lightly tropical-fruit flavoured Chenin Blanc that is both supple and seductive. The delicate fruit is complemented by wonderful minerality that is a classic hallmark of good Chenin.
The Chenin Blanc grapes, often referred to as Steen in South Africa, for this wine were harvested from old, low yield-bearing bush vines, from the Helderberg region of Stellenbosch.
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International Wine Challenge 2011
Decanter World Wine Awards 2011
Stellenbosch region of South Africa
One of the most famous wine regions in South Africa surrounds the second oldest town in South Africa, of the same name.
In an amphitheatre style, Stellenbosch is surrounded by a series of mountains, and vineyards can be found both on the valley floor and on the sides of the valleys, as the soils move from sandstone to granite as the land gets higher, although the best wines are generally thought to come from the area surrounding the town.
The further north you travel in Stellenbosch, the warmer the climate (as you’re heading inland) but the whole of Stellenbosch is nevertheless blessed with great grape growing conditions. While Chenin Blanc was historically the wine of note here, today the region much prefers to turn its hand to red grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Merlot although good Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay can be achieved here in the right locations.
Native to the Loire Valley this is probably one of the world’s most versatile grape varieties, today grown also in South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and the US amongst others.
It is capable of producing some of the best sweet wines you might ever taste but is also used to make very good dry white wines that can be full and unctuous or dry and spritzy. The range of styles of Chenin is enormous, especially if you add oak into the mix or you consider that it makes lovely sparkling wines as well.
It tastes of lovely lemony fruit and can have a delicious richness to it that is very appealing. As a sweet wine it is unctuous without cloying due to the high levels of acidity and in its sparkling form, principally produced in the Loire Valley, is fresh and zesty.
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Salads & Vegetables
This wine would suit Caesar, chicken, egg, fish or seafood salad. Would also work well with root vegetables such as carrots, onions and parsnips.
Fish & Seafood
Seafood and firm white fish such as plaice, skate and sole are good matches for this wine. You could also pair this wine with a clam chowder, kedgeree and smoked fish.
Pasta & Other Sauces
This wine works well with fish based sauces or ones that are light and creamy such as hollandaise. You could also go for a nice parsley sauce or pesto base.
Whether it's grilled, barbecued, baked or casseroled this wine works with white meats such as chicken, turkey and pork but it also suits duck and veal.
Herbs & Spices
Works with big flavours such as coriander, fennel, garlic and ginger but will also work with basil, parsley or tarragon.
A great wine to enjoy with Thai, Chinese and light Indian dishes such as a Korma.
Matches well to Brie and Camembert but is very well suited to mozzarella and some mature Cheddars.