While this year’s Standard Bank Chenin Blanc Top 10 Challenge winners make for a pretty credible line-up of wines, many of them are not what you’d call “easy drinking” – take, for instance, the Spier 21 Gables 2017, which was fermented and matured for 14 months in French oak, 60% new and has an alcohol of 14.74% to go with a residual sugar of 4.6g/l, total acidity of 6.0g/l and pH of 3.4. Delicious but the sort of wine you drink sitting on the edge of your bed with your shoes off.
Also among the winners, the Mulderbosch Steen op Hout 2017, stood out for its charm and accessibility. 100% stainless steel fermented, 28% aged was then age in barrel, second – and third-fill, it’s got an alcohol of 13.5%, an RS of 2.3g/l, a TA of 5.3g/l and a pH of 3.61. On the nose, a floral top note before white peach and citrus while the palate displays lovely pure fruit and snappy acidity. Best of all, it’s R75 a bottle from Wine Cellar. Summer’s coming, folks, so stock up now.
Editor’s rating: 91/100.
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