Like its fellow Loire grape sauvignon blanc, chenin blanc flourishes in our climate. In my youth as a winemaker, most chenin blanc was used as a high acid blending variety for cask wine. Some makers understood its strengths and treated it properly. For the few passionate chenin blanc winemakers in New Zealand, it can be a rewarding varietal and produce very serious, elegant and ageworthy wine.
The Astrolabe Wrekin Chenin Blanc is made from grapes grown on a loess clay slope. We hand pick the grapes to give a delicacy to the phenolics. The chenin blanc is partially barrel fermented with wild yeast for complexity, with the remainder in stainless steel to preserve the fruit flavours. All fruit is free-run to retain purity. I love the chenin grape because of its distinct flavour profile, the crisp acidity and the ability of the wine to age with interest and grace.
Simon Waghorn — Winemaker
Green apple and honeysuckle, with lemon honey and a little vanilla from the oak.
Medium-bodied, with a focused, mineral length and flavours of crisp apple, lemon and peach.
Made to age gracefully; weight and honeyed flavours will result from cellaring.
Spring vegetables, grilled fish, goat’s cheese soufflé, pork terrine, and apple or pear salads.
"Fermented by indigenous yeasts in oak puncheons. Dry, crisply refreshing chenin blanc with green apple, lime-citrus and saline oyster-shell flavours supported by attractive, lively acidity. Good now but should age well. Drink 2020 to 2028.” JUL 20
Bob Campbell, Master of Wine
The Real Review © The Real Review
"A very expressive bouquet with aromas of ripe apple and citrus pith, spring blossoms and pear, honeysuckle and minerality. Complexity builds as the wine begins to open up in glass. Tense, youthful, fresh and ripe fruited on the palate. Fruit flavours reflect the nose, acidity adds a layer of tension and freshness, crispness and length. A lovely wine with a dry finish. A lovely aperitif option and cellar worthy as well. Best from today and through 2028+." SEP 20
Cameron Douglas, Master Sommelier
“The 2018 vintage was hand-harvested in the Southern Valleys and partly fermented with indigenous yeasts in seasoned French oak puncheons. A dry style, it is very ageworthy. Bright, light lemon/green, it is mouthfilling, with strong, youthful, citrusy, slightly appley flavours, showing good intensity, and slightly biscuity notes adding complexity. Best drinking 2021+.”
New Zealand Wines: Michael Cooper’s Buyer’s Guide 2020
"Distinctive, featuring pure, concentrated yellow apple, peach and pear flavors, with a note of orange zest and a whiff of chamomile. The medium body and fleshy acidity add charm. Harmonious and fresh on the finish. Drink now.” SEP 20
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