If there was ever a success story within the South African wine world, Chenin blanc would be it. Over the past few years, Chenin Blanc’s effectively climbed up the corporate ladder so much it’s gone from worker to queen bee. As South Africa’s most widely planted variety (thanks to our country’s devotion to brandy), South Africa currently own two thirds of the world’s Chenin vines. This places local winemakers in good stead to harvest what is a veritable goldmine of quality grapes, beloved for their hardiness in the vineyards and fruity aromas in the cellar.
Originated in France’s Anjou wine region, Chenin blanc grows well in South Africa’s terroir – and particularly well in our little French corner of Franschhoek, a Cape paradise rich with Huguenot heritage. At Old Road Wine Co., we are extremely proud of our old vines (some of our Chenin bush vines are 35 years old, while the Sémillon block dates back to 1936). The grapes from these mature vines impart a distinctive depth of flavour and a refined magic to our wines – a perceptible difference in both glass and upon first sip.
Old Road Wine Co. Chenin is cultivated on a combination of high-altitude mature Franschhoek bush vines (Stonetrail Single Vineyard); while other premium grapes are sourced from mineral-rich Stellenbosch and Durbanville vineyards (The Elite Range Anemos) and Stellenbosch and Agter-Paarl granite soils (Le Courier). This results in a fine selection infused with Franschhoek heritage that appeals to a variety of Chenin fanatics.
With DrinkChenin Day, you’re bound to find a Chenin blanc that suits your palate and profile. With its incredible capacity to produce anything from dry, oaked or unoaked, sparkling or evens weet wine, this variety is a versatile chameleon to keep a close eye on. Take for example our multi-layered Old Road Wine Co. Stonetrail, brimming with gooseberry, white pear and quince aromas followed by an earthy minerality and prominent acidity. If you’re up for a delicately oaked Chenin, our Anemos offers sumptuous fruit, white pear, light oak and delicious crispness, while Le Courier shines with gorgeous peach, vanilla and peardrop aromas. Whatever your choice, we invite you to celebrate this special day with us and your favourite Chenin.
Whether you’re a Chenin newbie or ‘Steen-ophile’, share your Old Road Wine Co. Chenin experience on your Instagram story, and tag us at @oldroadwineco so we can share in your Chenin celebrations. While we may not be able to sit together at the tasting table just yet, we can certainly enjoy a virtual glass together on DrinkChenin Day!