Leeu Passant, Stellenbosch Chardonnay, 2018
Region: Stellenbosch, Coastal Region, South Africa
Bottle size: 75cl
This Chardonnay has aromas of yellow stone fruits with hints of cloves. The textured palate has notes of peaches and lemon curd, with a touch of salinity and well-integrated oak character, all balanced by a zesty acidity. The finish is long, with a beautiful purity. The grapes come from a single vineyard planted on the higher loam-based slopes of Helderberg Mountain. The site has a maritime influence, producing fruit with incredible intensity of flavour and zesty freshness.
These wines are made at Leeu Estates in Franschhoek, which was founded by Analjit Singh. The partnership with Chris and Andrea Mullineux started in 2013 when Analjit, who had visited South Africa for the first time in 2010 for the FIFA World Cup, bought into Mullineux. Chris and Andrea were brought in as winemakers at Leeu Estates, enabling them to work with fruit from Franschhoek, Stellenbosch and other regions beyond Swartland. “Rosa Kruger, our viticulturalist, had for years been enthusing to us about various parcels of fruit, but as they were outside the Swartland, we couldn’t use them in Mullineux,” explains Chris. Rosa Kruger, named ‘the queen of the Cape’s old vines’ by Tim Atkin MW, has been almost single-handedly responsible for finding and saving many of the Cape’s most venerable vineyards and also works with Fairview in Paarl and Gabriëlskloof in Walker Bay.