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Wine of the Month – March 2012: Springfield Estate Methode Ancienne Chardonnay 2006 (SA Wines Online £18.99)

March 11, 2012 1:05 pm / by

One of the great things about being South African is my regular visit to Cape Town where I so enjoy eating out.  Every restaurant I have visited there has a great selection of wines and, whatever you may think of South African reds, a great selection of excellent white wines is always to be found on restaurant wine lists.  Of course, a trip to wine country is obligatory!  I am very fortunate in that my mother’s house in Cape Town is only ten minutes drive from Constantia Uitsig which boasts three great restaurants as well as some great whites (I am a huge fan of their Semillon).

But my March wine of the month does not come from Uitsig, or even Constantia, it hails from the Robertson District and from Springfield Estate.  This Chardonnay is far removed from the generic, heavily oaked, tasteless drink that was so popular a few years ago.  For a start you will need to decant it as it is bottled both unfined and unfiltered and thus throws a sediment.  This is made from a small yield of grapes, hand-picked at night and grown on gravelly, calcareous soil and is barrel-fermented using wild yeast from the vineyard.

As this wine is unfined it is perfect for vegetarians and vegans.

This wine is drinking beautifully now but will age for many years.  Whatever you do, don’t serve this wine too cold – it needs minimal chilling in order to appreciate its depth and complexity of flavour.  This is a big wine (14%) with a fabulous combination of tropical fruits, cream and lime.  Take your time with this one – it deserves to be treated with loving respect.  Let the bouquet develop in glass for a good ten minutes then sip and savour.  Enjoy!

Available from SA Wines online at £18.99 a bottle or from Bibendum at £112.68 for a case of six bottles.

 

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