Blackwater 'Piquet' Chenin Blanc, Swartland, South Africa 2017

Blackwater Piquet Chenin Blanc.jpg
Blackwater Piquet Chenin Blanc.jpg

Blackwater 'Piquet' Chenin Blanc, Swartland, South Africa 2017

28.95

If you’re wondering how to spot the difference between South Africa’s old ‘New Wave’ and South Africa’s new ‘New Wave’, there’s a very simple litmus test. Look at their hair. With the likes of Adi Badenhorst, Marc Kent and Duncan Savage now sporting distinguished silver locks, it’s easy to spot the next generation of winemakers and Francois Haasbroek of Blackwater Wine doesn’t have a grey hair on his head. He’s part of an exciting group of young talents that includes Chris Alheit, Johan ‘Stompie’ Meyer, John Seccombe, Trizanne Barnard, David & Nadia Sadie and Lukas Van Loggerenberg and they’re all making wines that owe a debt to the first wave pioneers, but have taken it to the next level. It should be added that Eben Sadie straddles both waves, as evinced by his silver-free hair.

With this wine, Francois Hassbroek has crafted one of the finest Chenin Blancs in South Africa. Ostensibly, it’s a taut, dry and linear Chenin Blanc, but there’s discreet depth, breadth and richness. Apricot danish, warm sourdough and honey mingle with dusty minerals and citrus and hints of sparked gunpowder and pear skin. 13% alc. 10 months in old oak barrels. Drink now-2024.

Press review:

Wine Mag: “Grapes from a vineyard approaching 30 years old near Piketberg in the Swartland, the wine was matured for 10 months in a combination of old 300- and 500-litre barrels. The nose is complex and alluring showing pear, citrus and white peach overlaid with subtle notes of hay, yellow earth and spice while there’s also just a hint of yeasty complexity. The palate has great fruit purity and coated acidity while the finish has some nice phenolic grip thanks to “exceptionally small, thick skinned berries”. It’s remarkably vivid and packed with detail. Alc: 13%.” 95 points

Tim Atkin MW: “Piquet comes from Piketberg in the Swartland, located 50 miles north of Malmebsury and is an exciting first release. Pithy, mineral and very focused, it has some creamy mid-palate weight and subtle reduction. 2019-2025.” 93 points

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