#312 Fledge & Co Old Vine / Ou Bosstok Chenin Blanc 2022

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Fledge and Co. continue to be a source of constant entertainment to more progressive wine lovers, both in South Africa, and abroad. The team is made up of married couple Leon Coetzee and Margaux Nel, who base their operations in the town of Calitzdorp in the Klein Karoo Region of the South African winelands. When Margaux is not making wines for Fledge & Co’s delightfully disparate portfolio of old vine wines, single site expressions, and wonderfully bizarre blended bottlings, she is the head winemaker for BoPlaas Estate. Leon, for his part, spends a large part of his life on the road, travelling from Calitzdorp to the Swartland, to Elgin, to Constantia and back to the Klein Karoo, hunting down vineyards where he can source fruit that is distinct enough to hold his ever-flitting attention long enough to see those grapes transformed into wine.
Today’s wine is a single-vineyard bottling from the Swartland, planted in 1968, and farmed by one AF Kirsten – one of the central pillars in the Darling Cellars fraternity. The block is a certified heritage vineyard, but as is so often the case with some of the earlier records, any information about the clone (or any other cultivars that may have been interplanted) has been lost. A delightful little bit of vinous controversy ensued when there was the accusation that this block may well have been interplanted with cultivars like Clairette Blanche, Palomino and Colombard… but in the absence of hard proof to the contrary, the records still state that is it a 100% Chenin Blanc block.
If you have yet to sign up for your Monthly HanDrinksSolo Wine Subscription then you won’t be able to weigh in on whether or not you can taste those waxy hints of Clairette, or the apples and pears of a some palomino…but for my money its about as classic a “steen” as one could hope for. To back up my assertion, I’ve left my tasting notes and some technical specs:

TASTING NOTES

👃🏼 An incredibly fresh and primary nose of citrus, peaches, apricots and really rather explosive lemon blossom. But there are also some slightly more playful notes of dried mango and guava fruit roll.  
👄 The palate is driven mostly by the lovely interplay between sweet cling peach fruit, with brighter touches of apricot and oranges. But along with those primary elements, there is also a bit of spice that emerges on the tail, which combines elements of white pepper and nutmeg with a touch of the sharpness you might get from chewing on a piece of lemons rind.

TECHNICAL SPECS

🔬 Wine of Origin Swartland. 100% Chenin Blanc. Planted in 1968, this old dry land bush vine Swartland Chenin Blanc is hand harvested & crafted using a portion cold-fermented grapes, matured in stainless steel. The other parcel is fermented & matured in old French oak. Matured on fine lees (sur lie), blended & bottled unfiltered.
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