If you have not yet visited Groot Constantia, one of the Cape’s oldest Wine Estates please put it on your list, it is a magical experience. There are two excellent restaurants on the Estate, the Jonkershuis and Simon’s, both serving good food and of course the Groot Constantia Wines. The Manor House Museum and the Old Cloete Cellar behind the Manor House are well worth visiting. This is the home of the much-awarded Winemaker Boela Gerber and his Groot Constantia Chardonnay 2018.
The grapes for the Groot Constantia Chardonnay 2018 come from two blocks of varying heights above the sea. Cooling breezes off the Benguela Current which runs up the west coast from the cold South Atlantic Ocean that come down over the Constantia Mountain, and also off False Bay, ameliorate the Summer heat in the vineyards and allow for a longer hanging time for ripening, resulting in greater flavours in the resultant wine.
The Groot Constantia Chardonnay 2018 was fermented in 35% new French Oak barrels with the balance being previous fills. Spontaneous fermentation from the vineyard yeasts was used in 20% of the blend. Some barrels underwent malolactic fermentation. The barrels were rolled during maturation to mix the lees, resulting in greater mouthfeel.
From a Burgundy shaped bottle with the word Constantia embossed just above the label with the word Constantia indicating that the grapes used were grown in that Appellation. The label is the classical etching of the Manor House. In the glass, the wine is a pale golden straw in colour with some lime green flashes when held up to the light. The aromas are lemony citrus, marzipan and an undertow of the supportive oak with its concomitant spice and vanilla. The palate as expected is generous, particularly in mid palate with the most satin of mouthfeels. Lovely golden thread of acidity running through to the long and gently waning aftertaste. This is a truly impressive glass and while eminently drinkable now, it will reward after a couple of years of cool cellaring.
The Groot Constantia Chardonnay 2018 should be served cold, but not over chilled. It is certainly a great food wine. Jane-Anne Hobbs’s Warm Duck Salad with Crackly-Topped Beetroot is the ideal summery salad to accompany this lovely wine. Click HERE for her recipe and also to browse her lovely website.
Listen to my 60 second podcast , click the little red arrow on the left
Read more about Groot Constantia – CLICK HERE