De Trafford Chenin Blanc 2007
By Christian Eedes, 18 August 2010
De Trafford winemaker David Trafford won the WINE magazine Challenge in 2000 and again in 2002 (jointly with Teddy Hall) so his capability with Chenin is well established.
According to the De Trafford website, grapes for this wine come from vineyards ranging in age from 21 to 35 years in Helderberg, Stellenbosch. The wine was 100% barrel fermented with natural yeasts, no malolactic fermentation occuring. It was then kept in 225 litre and a few 700 litre casks for 7 to 8 months. 80% French and 20% American oak was used, 20% new.
I opened the wine on Saturday night and found it quite shy. Leaving half the bottle open overnight did it good, it showing more pronounced apricot, honey and spice flavours the next day. The acidity was relatively soft but the wine had good palate weight without being unctuous and finished pleasingly dry. Not nearly as lurid as some old vine Chenin can be.
The label painting is by David’s wife Rita titled “ Seis Pajaros”, and while so much wine packaging is unininspired, made for something we were glad to have on our dining table.
Alc 14.83% RS 1.9g/l TA 5.3g/l pH 3.50