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Raats Original
Chenin Blanc

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Alwyn van der Merwe

Director of Investments

The seasons are a-changing, and I’ve noticed I’m spending more time in the white wine section of my cellar in search of wines to accompany fresh spring dishes or simply to enjoy with friends and family as the evenings become longer and warmer. One of my current favourites is the Raats Original Chenin Blanc.

I have in earlier Wine of the Month columns remarked on the positive attributes of chenin. It is a truly South African cultivar – we make these world-class wines according to our own style. Although the cultivar is highly versatile in the hands of the winemaker, the wines are usually fresh, yet not overly acidic – and can be very complex.

The good news for consumers is that although our premium whites are often made from old chenin vines and are therefore quite pricey in rand terms, there’s still a wide range of high-quality chenins that over-deliver relative to their price. One of these is the Original Chenin Blanc made by Bruwer Raats and his team.

When Bruwer started his solo journey in the industry, he decided – rather bravely or even contrarily – to focus on two cultivars: chenin blanc and cabernet franc. The quality of the wines that come from his Stellenbosch-based cellar indicate that the approach has worked.

The Original Chenin Blanc presents itself with a nose of green apple and pear aromas, with nuances of jasmine in the background. The stone fruit flavours repeat on the palate with a hint of minerality. However, it is the mouthfeel that makes the wine. It offers an initial ‘fat’ coating in the mouth but then the freshness dominates, ending in a linear or direct fashion with a long aftertaste.

Although this wine is 100% tank-fermented, it certainly has some ageing potential as its structure will support further improvement in the bottle.

This top-class chenin can be acquired at around R150 per bottle. Nowhere in the world is one likely to find such quality for such a low price!


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Sanlam Private Wealth clients can purchase the Raats Original Chenin Blanc for a special price of R135.00 per bottle (cellar price R150.00) by filling in the form below.

All wine offers expire after 30 days. Subject to availability. Delivery charges may apply.

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