Alheit Vineyards, Hemelrand Vine Garden 750ml 2018South Africa, Walker Bay
'31% Roussanne, 20% Chenin Blanc, 29% Chardonnay, 7% Verdelho and 3% Muscat. An exotic nose showing pelargonium and honeysuckle as well as quince, stone fruit, melon and pineapple. The palate is rich and flavourful with zippy acidity and a savoury finish. Dead sexy.' – Christian Eedes, Winemag.co.za, 94/100
'Vine Garden is sourced from a 2010 block that's right next to Chris Alheit's cellar in the Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge. Priced below his other wines, it's an easier drinking cuvée of Roussanne, Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Verdelho and Muscat, with aromatic kitchen spice, some pear, quince and peach fruit and a hint of skin tannin. 2019-23.' – Tim Atkin SA Special Report 2019, 92/100
The Cape has a largely Mediterranean climate, with some cooler regions resembling the windy maritime climate of Spanish Galicia. It stands to reason, that if we wish to make the best wines possible in the Cape, we should play to our strengths by planting grape varieties that suit our climate. Plenty of inspiration can be found throughout the Mediterranean basin and the Iberian Peninsula.
Therefore, based on this premise, Hans Evenhuis planted a vineyard on Hemelrand in the year 2010. We call it Vine Garden. The idea is to bottle the wine just as the vineyard produces it, effectively creating a white field blend that changes every year depending on the vintage conditions.
The vineyard was planted in roughly the following proportions: 40 % Chardonnay, 30% Roussanne, 13% Verdelho, 12% Chenin blanc, 3% Viognier, and 2% Muscat Blanc a petit grains. However, as mentioned the proportions of the different grapes produced varies significantly each vintage.
Hemelrand it is situated at 360 meters above sea level, on gravelly clay, and Sandstone. It is cold and windy – a very marginal site. Grapes ripen slowly here. We have high hopes for this place.
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AG: Antonio Galloni of Vinous.com | AM: Allen Meadows of Burghound.com | CE: Christian Eedes of Winemag.co.za | DEC: Decanter | GS: Greg Sherwood MW | JR: JancisRobinson.com | NM: Neal Martin of Vinous.com OM: Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show | PG: Platter's Guide | TA: Tim Atkin MW | WA: Wine Advocate | WE: Wine Enthusiast | WS: Wine Spectator