Spioenkop, Johanna Brandt Chenin Blanc, Elgin, South Africa, 2018
A qualified industrial engineer, “crazy Belgian” Koen learned to make wine with François Naudé at L’Avenir before embarking with his wife Lore on the long search for their own farm. Historically an apple growing region Elgin is now regarded as a premium vine growing area.
300m above sea level, at Spioenkop cooling sea breezes funnel down the valley which prolongs the growing period. Slopes are steep so no tractor can operate and there are 7 different soil structures on the farm. Each cultivar is planted on a different soil all of which are quite stony and make the vines work hard. Their first wines were bottled in 2010.
The Johanna Brandt comes from the lower section of the Chenin Blanc vineyard which sits on shale. As a result, it is the more powerful of the two Spioenkop Chenin Blanc wines, and has a slightly more tropical fruit profile. This wine is aged in oak, whereas the Sarah Raal sees mostly stainless steel. It is a powerful wine with rich fruit on the palate and a lovely acid line (as with all Spioenkop wines). Tim Atkin: 94pt
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