Here in the UK, the wine trade is usually always a vintage behind a wine’s home market. That can be great luck when a wine scores highly and sells out quickly locally but then resurfaces weeks or months later as a new release in an international market. That’s pretty much the scenario with Niels Verburg’s 2018 Luddite Chenin Blanc.
I only recently retasted and reviewed the 2014 vintage but was very pleased to fast forward this week and taste his delicious and hugely impressive 2018 that is just landing in the UK. There are so many exceptional Chenin Blanc whites around South Africa at the moment, most coming from Stellenbosch, Paarl and the Swartland. But this Bot River expression is different, showing an exotic complexity with an extra little je ne sais quoi. I can only put that down to the terroir of the Bot River region. Quantities are small so you’ll need to be quick off the mark to secure stock.
Luddite Chenin 2018, WO Bot River, 11.5 Abv.
Fabulously powerful aromatics of honeysuckle, lemon cordial, freshly sawn acacia, Seville oranges, pineapple pastille and a wet river stone minerality. The palate is super sleek and focused, vibrantly fresh with a sweet / sour acidity, fine textural fleshy breadth and a bold savoury saline bite on the finish. Lovely expression of premium Chenin Blanc that has its own unique character.
(Wine Safari Score: 96/100 Greg Sherwood MW)