Wine: DeMorgenzon Reserve Chenin Blanc 2016
Wine of Origin: Stellenbosch
Winemaker: Carl van der Merwe
Background: The 2017 Standard Bank Chenin Blanc Top 10 Challenge winners were announced this week at a function held at the Delaire Graff Restaurant outside Stellenbosch. The Challenge, now in its fourth year, attracted 136 entries from all the major wine-producing areas in the Cape. The five-member judging panel, headed by Cathy van Zyl, tasted the wines blind which resulted in a short list of 33 wines for consideration before making the final decision of the ten eventual winners.
"The very narrow margin in the scores between those who did and didn't make the final cut reflects an exciting level of excellence in South African Chenins," said Ken Forrester, chairman of the Chenin Blanc Association (CBA). "It's thrilling to see how many local winemakers are so clearly and creatively expressing the world-class potential of this varietal."
Included in the top 10 was the DeMorgenzon Reserve Chenin Blanc 2016. This Chenin has become hugely popular which is not surprising as the quality of the wine each vintage is unquestionable. The grapes were handpicked from low-yielding 45 year old vines which started out as bushvine’s but recently have been lifted onto trellis. Fermentation took place in French oak barrels (25% new), using indigenous yeasts. After fermentation the wine was aged on its lees in oak barrels for 11 months prior to bottling.
Result: Delicious elegance with flavours of yellow fruit, green apple wrapped up with a minerally profile and richness, balanced by a crisp acidity.
When to drink: Now till 2022
Drink with what: We enjoyed it with Confit duck leg, butternut puree & gratin, crispy Brussel sprouts & tahini prepared by the team at Delaire Graff.
Expect to pay: R420.00