Last week I had the greatest of experiences offered to a wine writer, a one-on-one mid harvest couple of hours with Martin Moore, Founding Cellarmaster of The Durbanville Hills Winery, celebrating his 22nd harvest at the winery. We tasted our way through several wines and then were joined by Wilhelm Coetzee with some of his new vintage reds, about to be released, for which we wrote the sensory notes. Fun!
The grapes for the Durbanville Hills Chenin Blanc 2019 come from both the Eastern and Western slopes of the cool climate Valley. Picked when fruit, sugar and acidity are all in perfect balance. Taken to the winery to Kobus Gerber, the Winery’s White Wine Maker, they are destemmed and gently crushed. There was minimal skin contact before the free run juice was run off and cold settled overnight.
The following day the juice was racked off with a small portion of light lees, which added further complexity in the wine. Fermentation then took place after which it was matured for three months on fresh lees. This creates a weightier palate. The wine was then prepared for bottling.
From a Burgundy shaped bottle, closed with a screw cap. The label is the classical Durbanville Hills lozenge shape, simple and elegant. In the glass, the wine is a pale golden straw in colour with youthful flashes of lime green when held up to the light. Aromas are of poached apples, sweet tropical limes and guavas. These flow on to the palate and are joined by fynbos honey and white flowers, and interestingly, I found soft sweet sour apple pie filling. There is a lovely line of acidity going form entry though the generous mid palate into the long and gently waning aftertaste. An impressive glass to drink now and which can only improve of given a couple of years of cool cellaring.
The Durbanville Hills Chenin Blanc 2019 is a serious wine for gentle sipping as a mid-morning refresher, or a sundown sipper. However, it excels as a food wine, as an aperitif or to go with a main course. Nina Timm’s Granny’s Roast Chicken is just the most perfect partner. Click HERE for her recipe.
Nina Timm of https://www.my-easy-cooking.com
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