Summer time is here and it’s time for white wine and bubbly. When talking about popular types of white wine, the first one that comes to mind is often Chardonnay. If you don’t like the richness of Chardonnay, but you still want something fruity, Sauvignon Blanc or Chenin Blanc remain a popular choice. There is a white wine for every person’s palate.
Caroline’s White Wine Review is one of the most popular events on the South African wine calendar if you love white wine and bubbly. It was hosted in the ballroom of the prestigious Table Bay Hotel with 60 top white wine and MCC producers that showcased their wine.
Here is a list of White Wines and MCC we tasted:
VILLIERA – MONRO BRUT PRESTIGE CUVEE MCC 2013
Only the cuvee (best quality juice) was used in the blend which consists of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. The wine offers a rich, creamy, yeasty nose, with a refreshing flavour on the middle palate developing finesse and complexity on the aftertaste.
STEENBERG – 1682 PINOT NOIR MCC NV
The MCC has a pale pink colour and is fresh and savoury with notes of wild rose, dried herbs, fynbos, toasted brioche and strawberries. A delicate balance exists between the crisp acidity and subtle creaminess on the palate. The fine effervescence delights the taste buds and brings the bouquet to the forefront once again.
BOTANICA – MARY DELANY CHENIN BLANC 2017
The beautifully appointed Chenin Blanc from Botanica Wines shows an exquisite sunshine yellow colour in the glass, hinting at the sultry tropical fruit aromas that dominate the nose. Expect to encounter alluring peach and apple flavours alongside soft yeasty and earthy notes that perform with pleasing intensity on the mid-palate. The wines profile is kept focused by an edge of taut acidity, complementing the delicate mineral flavours that present themselves on the finish.
BOUCHARD FINLAYSON – MISSIONVALE CHARDONNAY 2017
Styled as a food focussed wine, displaying flavours of pineapple and white pear, with the slightest hint of toasted hazelnut. A distinctively refreshing, savoury accent within its broad, yet harmonious, palate. The polished and creamy texture floats easily into a lengthy, expressive finish.
CEDERBERG – FIVE GENERATIONS CHENIN BLANC 2017
Delicate aromas of honey, lime zest, roasted nuts and peaches laced with sweet vanilla undertones. Well-integrated wood and ageing on the lees developed a full, rich palate with a smooth lingering finish. This Chenin Blanc is concentrated and structured for longevity. An elegant well crafted wine.
DAVID AND NADIA – ARISTARGOS 2018
A blend of Chenin Blanc, Clairette Blanche, Semillon, Roussanne, Viognier and Marsanne – six varieties, 14 vineyards and 20 pickings. An exotic nose showing top notes of flowers and dried grass before peach, apricot, melon and pineapple. The palate has lovely fruit expression, zippy acidity and a savoury finish. Intricate and balanced, this moves really well – great entry and side-palate before a long finish.
DE WETSHOF – BATELEUR CHARDONNAY 2017
Aromas of white peach and guava are nicely sutured into the wood and there is decent freshness. The palate is well balanced, featuring grapefruit, red apple and light honeysuckle notes, and the acidity is well judged with a commercially savvy, slightly vanilla-y finish that lingers nicely in the mouth.
DIEMERSDAL – WINTER FERMENT SAUVIGNON BLANC 2018
Winter Ferment – a wine made in exactly this manner. The grapes frozen and allowed to ferment only 4 months later, the cool winter temperatures then ensured a slow, cool fermentation, resulting in a beautifully ester-driven, fruit-forward and aromatic Sauvignon blanc. With only a tiny quantity produced, we can allow only one bottle per customer. Expect gooseberries, tropical fruit and a grapefruit-like acidity on a mineral core and textured mouthfeel from time spent on lees post-fermentation.
DE MORGENZON – RESERVE CHENIN BLANC 2017
This show stopping white displays effusive aromas of white flower, stone fruit, honey and toast which erupt into opulent flavours of pear, orange blossom, caramel and spice. It’s a world class wine offering that strikes a brilliant balance between lush fruit and crisp, mouth-watering acidity.
GHOST CORNER – THE BOWLINE 2017
Sailors call the bowline the ‘king of knots’- a strong simple knot that symbolises union, completion and eternal devotion. This white blend ‘ties the knot’ between Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc to produce The Bowline. Green fig and dusty elements from the Semillon complement the ripe asparagus notes from the Sauvignon Blanc. A complex wine with well balanced oak with a refreshing, smooth finish.
GROOT CONSTANTIA – GOUVERNEURS RESERVE WHITE 2017
The wine imparts intense aromas of tropical fruit, gooseberries and apricots with subtle hints of freshly cut grass. The silky rich palate combines minerally and flinty flavours with an exhilarating citrusy finish.
HARTENBERG – THE ELEANOR 2015
Citrus with lanolin, hay and tropical fruits on the bouquet. Also very subtle toasty, brioche notes. The palate is plush on entry, rich and melded yet shows a fine acidity that provides a perfect balance to the wine. A restrained elegance and lingering aftertaste completes the wine.
HAMILTON RUSSELL – CHARDONNAY 2018
Prominent pear and lime fruit aromas and flavours are brought beautifully into focus by a tight line of bright natural acid and a long, dry minerality. An elegant, yet textured and intense wine with a strong personality and great complexity.
JORDAN ESTATE – NINE YARDS CHARDONNAY 2017
A style characterised by refreshing linear acidity and mouthfilling fruit textures. Classic Nine Yards flavours with lime citrus and fragrant oak spice.
IONA – CHARDONNAY 2017
Rich, creamy and nutty with a lemony acidity, strong mineral undertones and a discreet use of French oak.
KEN FORRESTER – THE FMC CHENIN BLANC 2018
Rich, layered with dried apricot, vanilla and honey. Will gain additional complexity with cellaring.
KWV – THE MENTORS GRENACHE BLANC 2017
This layered wine shows aromas of poached pear, marzipan and apple blossom with hints of minerality, lime and citrus. The fresh and earthy palate is creamy and textured with a concentrated, chalky finish.
MORESON – MERCATOR CHARDONNAY 2017
Upfront sweet white fruit with a buttery roundness and subtle hints of crème brûlée. The complex sweet-citrus buttery flavour perfectly balances the Premium Chardonnay aroma; while a full mouth feel and a moreish finish complete the experience.
MORGENSTER – ESTATE WHITE RESERVE 2018
A classic rendition of a white Bordeaux-style blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. Complex, elegant and powerful with some citronella zing and great acidity. A delightfully fragrant, ripe and fresh wine.
MULLINEUX – OLD VINES WHITE 2018
A blend of Chenin Blanc, Clairette Blanche, Grenache Blanc, Viognier and Semillon. the nose shows citrus and stone fruit to go with hay, ginger and other spice. The palate is power-packed – thick textured and intensely flavoured with coated acidity and a savoury finish.
NEIL ELLIS – AMICA SAUVIGNON BLANC 2017
Initial scents of white florals and fresh herbs, are supported by those of sweet stone fruits and honeysuckle, and completed by a flinty minerality. Juicy with mouth watering notes of nectarine, lime and lemongrass. A round and creamy mouth feel complemented by gentle minerality whilst the nervy acidity contributes to a youthful and vibrant finish. The 2017 Amica is a complex and textured expression of Sauvignon Blanc.
OAK VALLEY – GROENLANDBERG CHARDONNAY 2018
Chardonnay with ripe flavour profiles with notes of stone fruit, citrus and apple with a great minerality on the palate. The cool climate of the Elgin Valley, the high altitude and whole bunch fermentations only a stones throw from the vineyard, is what gives this wine its character and depth of fruit.
OLIFANTSBERG – GRENACHE BLANC 2018
A unique style of Grenache Blanc which shows delicacy and finesse. Subtle aromas of lime blossom combine with green herbal notes, white peach and quince through to a beautifully balanced and richly textured palate with a delicious saline hint on the finish.
PAUL CLUVER – SEVEN FLAGS CHARDONNAY 2017
Hints of buttered toast / brioche on the nose with some citrus aspects too. Tangerine fruit and citrus blossom fragrances are apparent, with hints of vanilla pod and ruby grapefruit at the end. These characteristics follow through onto the palate. The fine, fresh acidity lifts the fruit, give the wine lovely freshness and adds poise and focus to the wine.
PASERENE – CHARDONNAY 2017
The 2017 Paserene Chardonnay offers a bright green-golden color that is clear and brilliant in the glass. On the nose it is incredibly lively with beautiful notes of citrus zest, parmesan, fresh honey, cream and oats. The fruit profile is mainly lemony, but there is a strong under current of minerals: chalk, quarry dust and clay that makes the wine visceral. On the palate the wine is broad with a reigned-in racy acidity and almost sea-breeze-like salinity that gives the wine great length and complexity.
WARWICK – BLACK PROFESSOR 2018
The wine shows flavours of blackcurrant, which is typical of a white Bordeaux blend as well as passion fruit, litchi and citrus. There’s a hint of white florals such as winter lilies, with an edge of minerality calling up wet slate. The Sauvignon Blanc component brings the aromatics, and in turn the Semillon offers structure and body. Subtle French oak flavours complement the blend.
UVA MIRA – THE SINGLE TREE CHARDONNAY 2016
Rich and luxurious on the nose with succulent dried apricots and vivid yellow peach, creamy complexity and a hint of roasted cashew. A wine of beauty and class with intensity that builds on the palate. Mouth-watering tangerine and slightly honeyed toasted brioche notes with earthiness and integrated oak. Elegant, vivacious and lingering finish.
TRIZANNE – SEMILLON 2017
Rich aromatics of citrus, peach, winter melon, honeysuckle and warm oak spices. This intensity is continued on the palate with integrated flavours of fruit, spice and minerality; it is luxurious yet finely detailed. The elegance of the savoury finish is noticeable as the flavours very slowly fade.
REMHOOGTE – HONEYBUNCH CHENIN BLANC 2018
The wine has a pale golden yellow colour. The nose is complex and begins with fresh aromas of tropical fruit and honeysuckle, with undertones of subtle butter scotch and spicy acacia karoo. The Palate is rich and full bodied with a creamy texture and is livened by a fresh acidity and has a lingering, crisp finish. Honeyed aromas and flavours will develop with aging in the bottle.
RICKETY BRIDGE – THE PILGRIMAGE SEMILLON 2017
Initial freshness on the nose that opens up to a complex citrus and zesty lime with underlying floral aromas. A full, rich palate of honey, nougat and citrus is perfectly balanced with caramel sweetness and a lingering finish.
RUPERT & ROTHSCHILD – BARONESS NADINE CHARDONNAY 2017
A fresh and elegant Chardonnay with a fusion of citrus blossom aromas, macadamia nougat and baguette crust on the palate, followed by a creamy roundness with a lingering lemon zest finish.
B VINTNERS – HAARLEM TO HOPE 2017
A concentration of bright fruit on the nose that follows through onto the palate, that creates tension and excitement all at once. Nectarine, pear and melon are given depth by touches of spice, lemongrass and ginger, while hints of floral and scrub enhances a further dimension. Time in older oak, with close lees contact, has helped to give the wine breadth and depth on the palate and keeps the focus with a saline and savoury linger.
BOEKENHOUTSKLOOF – SEMILLON 2017
Nose shows melange of freshly squeezed citrus, pear, orange blossom, lemon curd and honeysuckle; yellow fruit follows through on the palate with richly textured mineral core; hints of vanilla and almonds from French oak; long, dry, nutty and spicy with peach blossom and hints of marzipan on lingering finish.
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