Old Vine Chenin Blanc 2020 – Warwick Wine Estate.
For international Chenin Blanc day we received a nice bottle of South African Chenin Blanc, made from old vines. This 2020 Chenin Blanc is produced by one of South Africa’s leading wineries; Warwick Wine Estate. Let us dive a bit deeper in the variety and this wine to discover why Chenin Blanc is rapidly increasing in popularity!
About the Winery
Warick Wine Estate is situated in the foothills of Stellenbosch’s Simonsberg Mountain in South Africa. With altitudes ranging from 240 to 360 metres above sea level their estate carries all the elements required to make world class wines. With cooling factors from both elevation and ocean breezes as well as slopes, aspects and soil types. The Warwich vineyards are a mix of classic Bordeaux varieties with a touch of South African classics such as Pinotage and old vine Chenin Blanc.
About the Variety in South Africa
Chenin Blanc is one of the most interesting grape varieties in South Africa due to its diversity and potential to make exciting, delicious and unique wines. Not surprisingly, passionate winemakers are constantly looking to develop new flavour profiles with this grape.
South Africa owes its reputation as one of the most impressive wine countries in the world to many factors but the role Chenin Blanc has played is definitely no insignificant. The variety Chenin Blanc was one of the first grape varieties introduced in South Africa, introduced in 1655 by Jan van Riebeeck.
About the Wine
The fruit for the Warwick Old Vine Chenin Blanc comes from a single Chenin Blanc vineyard planted on the lower slopes of the Simonsberg Mountains in 1978. These are old, low-yielding bush vines, planted on granite soils with a clay base to produce small crops of highly concentrated fruit.
The grapes are harvested by hand in the coolness of early morning. Upon arrival in the cellar, the whole bunches are pressed and the juice clears naturally as the stalks provide a natural filtration. Fermentation takes place in 400 litres of French oak of which 25% of the oak is 2 years old. After alcoholic fermentation, malolactic fermentation takes place, which give the wine a creaminess to it. The barrels are turned and rolled every couple of months for up to 9 months of lees stirring, which add another further complexity to the wine.
The appearance of the wine is lemon yellow, then to the nose there are aromatic notes of baked apple, cinnamon, ripe stone fruit, quince, brioche and peach. On the palate there is a rich creamy mouthfeel due to lees stirring, fine acidity but well structured, good balance of fruit melded with notes of the French oak it was matured in. Long length and a very well-balanced finish; it is evident that this wine is well crafted to express Old Vine Stellenbosch Chenin Blanc at its best!
We award this South African white beauty with an excellent 93-point DWA score.
Warwick wines are imported in the Netherlands by Vinites and available through associated resellers and hospitality partners. This wine is provided by Wines of South Africa (WoSA) and Pitch PR. The review is written by our own Teri Wheeler.
Taste date: June 2023
Website: Warwick Wine Estate