Palmiet Chardonnay, JH Meyer

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Palmiet Chardonnay, 2020, JH Meyer

A mineral and rich Chardonnay that takes you to Meursault via the Cape

Region: Elgin, South Africa
Grape(s): Chardonnay
Genre: Organic (in mindset, not stamp)
Low Sulphur: Yes
Tasting Notes: Citrus, stone fruits, wet stones, minerality, oak spices, nuts, toast

JH Meyer is a line from Johan Meyer of Mother Rock, the winery established by Johan Meyer, in collaboration with London-based wine importer Ben Henshaw of Indigo Wine. As a star in the new wave of South African low intervention wine makers, Johan was able to purchase fruit from organically farmed vineyards, in order to create inexpensive yet high quality wines for his Force Celeste line. The success of this led to an expansion to ‘Mother Rock’ and ‘JH Meyer’ wines, all from bought grapes highlighting exceptional parcels of South Africa’s diverse terroir; recently Johan has purchased some vines of his own and hopes that the 2023 vintage will produce good enough fruit for him to bottle his own wines. The wines from JH Meyer are from the cooler climate of the Cape South Coast in the appellations of Elgin and Walker Bay, renowned for their more refined presentation of Burgundy varieties.

This wine is a Chardonnay from Elgin, a coastal region that benefits from the cooling Benguala current in the south Atlantic Ocean. This vineyard also benefits from the cooling effects of 500-700 metre altitude. Hard harvested grapes are gently pressed so only the free-run juice is used, and spontaneously fermented in old, 500 litre French oak barrels. The wine is aged in oak for 10 months, with some barrels not being fully topped up to allow a small part of the wine to show complexity from oxidation. This is a white with power and opulence, oak spices and nutty from the oxidation, balanced with searing acidity and minerality that takes you to some of the most esteemed vineyards in the Côte de Beaune.