Opinion: Lock, stock and wine barrel

Chardonnay is the wunderkind that forms the base of MCC, is enjoyed on its own and highly favourable to cellar.

The world celebrates one of the most famous and revered white wines, the noble Chardonnay, on Thursday. World Chardonnay Day highlights the varietal, but in SA there is so much more to highlight.

Chardonnay is the wunderkind that forms the base of MCC, is enjoyed on its own and highly favourable to cellar. It’s the kind of wine that, when oak-matured, is buttery bliss year round – or can be light and fruity.

That versatility means whether it’s a premium offering or an entry-level wine there’s something that will appeal to the majority of wine drinkers. There’s also no better
place to explore fine chardonnay than the Hemel-en-Aarde valley where Creation and Bouchard Finlayson are on top of their game.

Bouchard Finlayson’s Missionvale is a deft and emotive wine. Produced with grapes exclusively from the estate, it has become a
highly lauded wine.

Spending almost a year in French oak barrels, it’s a wine with a backbone that lingers. Each sip combines fruits like pear, melon and peach. Bouchard Finlayson 2016
Missionvale Chardonnay is R276 per bottle from the Estate.

Nearby Creation Wines has three Chardonnays in their list, each with its own depth and value. Starting with Creation Chardonnay 2017 at R195, the wine is noted for its fresh minerality, while the Creation Reserve Chardonnay at R310, is a buttery sipper with fruity freshness.

But it’s the sought after Art of Creation Chardonnay with its small-scale production that really stands on its own pulpit reading the testament of South African Chardonnay.

From butterscotch to almonds on the nose and little nods of vanilla on the palate, it’s a rich and worthwhile experience at R905. However, with limited quantities available it’s a purchase you have to plan in advance.

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