Meerendal Chenin Blanc Natural Sweet 2006
By Christian Eedes, 21 December 2011
Why is Meerendal such a perennial under-performer? This property’s location in cool-climate Durbanville alone should mean more accolades while it managed to attract the services of high-profile winemaker Karl Lambour for the 2006 harvest before he left for Constantia Glen and who is now at Holden Manz in Franschhoek. A rolling stone gathers no moss, as they say…
One of Lambour’s undoubted successes during his brief stint at Meerendal was the Chenin Blanc Noble Late Harvest which won the trophy for best dessert wine at the 2007 Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show and double gold at Vertitas that same year.
The wine was made by twisting bunches on the vineyards to get the grapes to dry and hence sweeten and then underwent a spontaneous ferment in second- and third-fill barrels. Drinking it now, the wine is smooth textured and well balanced. In terms of flavour, essence of peach, peach redux. Very winning but I found myself missing the complexity that botrytis would’ve added. Score: 16/20.