Lokaia Wines – A Project Exploring the Exotic Side of the Franschhoek Ward: Tasting Their New Chardonnay 2020…

Clayton Reabow of Môreson and Craig McNaught of Stony Brook winery are the winemakers behind this new innovative Franschhoek-based label and the owners of the Lokaia brand. It was their belief that there was more to explore in the potential of the Franschhoek Valley with varieties like Semillon, Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc that led to a new exciting range of wines.

The name “Lokaia” is derived from Ole Lukøje, the title of a fairy tale by author Hans Christian Andersen about the God of Dreams, and I’m sure neither Clayton nor Craig could have imagined (or dreamt) the level of acclaim to which their two new whites and one red wine would be received by the market, both locally in South Africa and internationally.

Track these exciting wines down. They are very well made, offer classical fine wine drinking pleasure and are something just a little bit different to the mainstream offerings on the market. (Available in the UK through importer Museum Wines)

Lokaia The Sandman Valley Floor Amphora Chardonnay 2020, WO Franschhoek, 12% Abv.

Made from from a Chardonnay vineyard located at Môreson winery located on the Franschhoek valley floor, this is certainly a characterful and dynamic Chardonnay that is impressive on multiple levels. The aromatics are pure and stony, alluring, boasting complex notes of dried green baking herbs, white citrus zest and waxy lemon peel nuances. Considering its meagre but refreshing 12% alcohol, the wine shows impressive mouthfeel and texture, a lovely liquid minerality, hints of limestone and oyster shell, lemon pith and green pear. Despite the fermentation and subsequent maceration on its skins for two months in a 500 litre clay amphora, this wine shows clarity and poise, zippy fresh acids and a real sense of confidence, purity and harmony. Comparisons to 1er Cru Chablis will be inevitable but that is hardly a negative. A wonderfully skilful wine that breaks with tradition! Drink now to 2026+.

(Wine Safari Score: 93+/100 Greg Sherwood MW)

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