Grape: Chenin Blanc (46%), Semillon (32%), Palomino (17%) and Muscat of Alexandria (5%)
Region: Swartland, South Africa
Ageing Potential: Drink now-2023
Perfect with: Balmain bugs with saffron risotto
You’ll love if you love: Dry, complex whites
Why you’ll love it:
‘T Voetpad mean ‘The Footpath’ in Dutch, and comes from the name of Dirk Brand’s wheat and rooibos tea farm, where the rustic block of old vines is tucked away. The tiny 1.4ha holds varieties that were planted between 1900-1928, when the Europeans first settled in the country. What creates the intense concentration and complexity of flavour is the lack of water. Amongst all the heat, the precise location of the vineyard has allowed it to survive, with an underground river flowing beneath it from the mountains. Without irrigation the vines are forced to work hard to reach their water source in order to survive. This produces tiny bunches no bigger than the size of a fist, but boy do they pack a punch.
No herbicides have been used, and grass and weeds between the vines help dry out the winter-wet soils, while driving the vine roots deeper. It is a special and unique place, producing wines of great character.
The T Voetpad 2013 is a blend of Chenin Blanc, Semillon, Palomino and Muscat de Alexandrie. This wine is a field blend of all the varieties—they are picked and pressed together, and co-ferment in old wooden casks. Only 200 cases produced.
Pale yellow in colour with a tinge of green. Intensely perfumed nose with fragrances of white flowers, honeysuckle, white nectarine, honeydew melon, citrus peel, lemon curd and a hint of salted caramel. Palate is dry, light-medium bodied with a gentle roundness on the mid palate underscored by racy acidity. Extremely harmonious and multifaceted with concentrated layers of floral, ripe pear, yellow apple, salted butter, dried honey nougat flavours and a complex finish that lingers forever. One of those wines you’ll wish you had a never ending bottle!