Wine Of The Week Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc 2022

Winona Griggs

My Pick for Wine of the Week: Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc 2022

Let me tell you about this incredible wine that has a fascinating story behind it.

The Kleine Zalze Wine Estate has deep roots in the history of old-vine chenin blanc. Over the past twenty years, this remarkable winery has been instrumental in reintroducing this grape variety to the world stage. With its resilience and distinctive character, chenin blanc has a rich heritage that spans over 300 years in the Cape’s winemaking history. It thrives in the diverse soils of the Stellenbosch region, showcasing the unique terroir.

“We believe that the older vineyards add a depth and concentration that is truly special to Stellenbosch’s expression of this grape,” explains cellarmaster RJ Botha. “Kleine Zalze is fortunate to have access to the largest collection of old-vine Stellenbosch chenin blanc vineyards, which is one of our distinguishing features.”

At our estate, we work tirelessly to manage, protect, and preserve our vineyards. These vineyards are home to ancient, weather-beaten bushes that have been standing for over 40 years. They thrive on the rocky soils of decomposed granite and Table Mountain sandstone and can withstand the strong winds that blow through the Cape during the summer.

Unleashing potential

But it’s not all about traditional methods at Kleine Zalze. We believe in exploring new and innovative ways to bring out the full potential of our grapes. Our winemaker, Johan Botha, and his team are always experimenting to uncover the true essence of the chenin blanc grape.

READ  The Best Coffee in Cape Town The MzansiBride

“Sometimes, simplicity comes from complexity, and that’s exactly what our Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc embodies,” says Botha. “We combine three different elements – old wood, clay amphorae, and concrete egg – to capture the diverse characteristics of chenin blanc grapes and create a harmonious masterpiece.”

As I eagerly listen to him, his excitement is infectious. He tells me, “Just the simple act of aging 10% of the chenin blanc in ancient clay amphorae has an astonishing impact on the outcome of the wine.” He explains that this age-old practice brings a unique dimension and complexity of flavor to the wine, enhancing the delightful chenin characteristics of pear, green apple, and citrus. The combination of the mature vineyards and older barrels already provides a rich and nuanced taste, but the addition of amphora-aged wine elevates the final product to a whole new level of brightness and freshness.”

Introducing the Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Chenin Blanc 2022

This wine recently earned a prestigious award in the Prescient Chenin Blanc Report, which is presented by Winemag, an online wine publication. It received an impressive 95-point score. “I’m thrilled because this wine is the first Kleine Zalze Chenin Blanc that has been given South Africa’s Old Vine Project Heritage Seal,” I say. This seal confirms that the wine is made from vines that are at least 35 years old. The grapes for this wine come from three different vineyards in the Faure region of the Stellenbosch Winelands. These vineyards face the ocean and False Bay.

This wine has quite a story behind it,” I continue. “The grapes come from old vineyards in three different locations, and we used a variety of materials for the fermentation and aging process. But ultimately, it all comes together to create one amazing white wine that truly represents the nature and essence of Stellenbosch.”

READ  Brand-New Galjoen Opens in the Innercity

When you taste this wine, you’ll experience an intense and elegant flavor profile. It showcases notes of white peach, and bursts of citrus pith add a refreshing twist. The wine has a subtle power to it, and it finishes with a mineral note on the palate. There’s also a delicate floral aroma that adds to its overall allure. You can enjoy this wine right away, or if you prefer, you can age it for up to 15 years under ideal storage conditions. It pairs perfectly with seafood, whether it’s shellfish or grilled fish. It’s also a great match for spicy dishes and soft cheeses.

Leave a Comment