Tag Archives: Chenin Blanc

We Drink: Raats Old Vine Chenin Blanc 2013

nullRaats Family Wines is a SAWi 2015 High-End White Wine Producer of the Year Finalist, with an average of 93.86 for its top three scoring whites. The Raats Original Chenin Blanc scored 92.8 points in 2015, earning SAWi Grand Gold status. We taste the Raats Old Vine Chenin Blanc 2013 as an example of the producer’s white wines portfolio.

This is a fantastic wine and an excellent example of the often-missed (in SA) value and potential complexity of Chenin Blanc.

In the glass the wine is striking, with a beautiful golden straw colour and distinct notes of pear, white peach and nettles on the nose. As the wine warms, tropical aromas are evident with citrus obvious and just a hint of spice.

With 30% of the wine aged in French oak for 9 months, and the additional 2 months lees-contact the oaked and unoaked components enjoy before bottling, the wine is noticeably full bodied and almost creamy, without masking any of the inherent Chenin Blanc fruitiness.

On the palate the wine exhibits tropical and stone fruit, citrus peel and ginger. There’s an enticing liqourice flavour prominent when inhaling after swallowing. The wine exhibits a perfect medium acidity, leading to a pleasing lingering mineral/lime finish.

The wine is perfect on its own, served cold, and is complex enough to be enjoyed with food – particularly a mild curry/spiced chicken or prawn dish, rocket-based salad, gammon or butternut soup.

Raats Old Vine Chenin Blanc 2013 costs R234 per bottle from Wine.co.za.

Accolades (according to the Raats.co.za website)
2013 – scored 90 points by Stephen Tanzer (June 2015).
2013 – 4½ stars John Platter 2015.
2013 – scored 92 points by Neal Martin from The Wine Advocate (0ct 2014).
2012 – scored 89 points by Wine Spectator (August 2014).
2012 – scored 93 points by Tim Atkin (July 2014).
2012 – 4½ stars John Platter 2014.
2012 – scored 89 points by Neal Martin from The Wine Advocate (October 2013).
2011 – scored 91 points by Wine Enthusiast (July 2014).

See technical and other details here.

SA CHENIN BLANC SHINES

2013 Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc iAfrica.com reported yesterday (11 May) that Johan Joubert’s 2013 Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc was named the best white at this year’s Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. The wine was produced from bush vines near Stellenbosch.

According to the article “Bush vines are less productive than trellised vines because they afford a greater canopy of leaf coverage to the fruit. But their advocates say the lower yield is worth it because the berries have much thicker skins and therefore produce more concentrated flavours.

More than 320 experts from more than 50 countries chose the winning wine at the 22nd edition of the competition, which was founded in Belgium in 1994 and has been hosted in different European countries since 2006.

Joubert has been a strong advocate of South African producers moving towards more concentrated chenin blanc wines, rather than relying on mass market sales of lighter and cheaper versions.

Since making the award-winning wine at Kleine Zalze he has moved on to work for Boland Cellar in the Western Cape town of Paarl, where he is also winning plaudits for his chenin blanc.”

South African Chenin Blanc is well-represented within the SA Wine Index Grand Wines Collection – and it is no surprise to see the 2013 Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc rake in yet another accolade. It’s what we expect from a SAWi Grande Wine.

Chenin Blanc wines in the current Grand Wines Collection include:
Beaumont Wines Hope Marguerite Chenin Blanc | Cederberg Private Cellar Five Generations Chenin Blanc | De Morgenzon Chenin Blanc | Jean Daneel Wines Chenin Blanc | Jordan Wine Estate Chenin Blanc | Ken Forrester Wines The FMC Chenin Blanc | Kleine Zalze Wines Cellar Selection Chenin Blanc Bush Vines | Kleine Zalze Wines Vineyard Selection Chenin Blanc Barrel Fermented | Raats Family Old Vines Chenin Blanc | Rijks Private Cellar Chenin Blanc | Spier Private Collection Chenin Blanc | Nederburg Wines Edelkeur Chenin Blanc Noble Late Harvest | Nederburg Wines Wine master’s Reserve Noble Late Harvest Chenin Blanc Muscat de Frontignan