Glenelly Glass Collection Chardonnay
The Glass Collection Chardonnay from Glenelly has a bright and brilliant colour with a slightly green hue. The wine has complex aromas of citrus, lime zest, marmalade and melon. On the palate, there is a beautiful, rounded, comforting texture with wonderful length, intense fruit complexity and a minerally, oyster shell finish. South African Chablis.
- Country: South Africa
- Region: Coastal Region
- Subregion: Stellenbosch
- Vintage: 2020
- Colour: White
- Grape Variety: Chardonnay
- ABV: 13.5%
- Bottle Size: 75cl
- Closure: Screwcap
- Style: Rich yet unoaked
- Drink With: All forms of shellfish and fish. Don't forget poultry either!
The Glenelly Glass Collection is named after May-Eliane de Lencquesaing's collection of nearly 1,000 rare pieces of glass, dating from 50BC to today, from the Middle East, Syria, Lebanon, Rome, Prague, Venice, Germany, England, Sweden, France and the USA. Glass and wine have lot in common: they both come from poor material and poor soils, and through man’s talent and genius they become works of art.
The grapes for the Glenelly Glass Collection Chardonnay were lightly crushed and gently pressed and the juice was transferred to two stainless steel fermenters where it underwent a spontaneous fermentation thanks to wild yeasts. The wine was not allowed to go through malolactic fermentation but it was left on its lees until bottling took place.
Why we like this wine
Well for starters it's just so well balanced and clean. When we first tasted it the likeness to Chablis was unmistakeable and the freshness really brought the palate to life. Considering the price of Chablis these days this is a great alternative.
- Clean and fresh with delicious fruit flavours
- Plenty of body but not derived from oak
- Great value for the quality
From Jancis Robinson's Purple Pages:
2009 was the first vintage of all Glenelly’s own reds, 2010 was the first white vintage. Winemaker Heinrich Loew used to work at Rustenberg, and Angelus, and Fieuzal and Screaming Eagle. Ambient yeast. Pale greenish gold. Quite broad and very fruity but with attractive finish. Good balance and lively wet-stony finish. Just the job. 16.5 Points
About the grower
On the southern slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain, in the Ida's Valley of Stellenbosch, lies the Glenelly Estate. In 1682, Cape Governor Simon Van Der Stel ceded the land on which the Glenelly Estate now stands to a French Huguenot, François Villion. In 1812, the estate passed to Johan Peter de Villiers, and finally in 1911 it became the property of a British family, the Garlicks. They owned it for 92 years until, in 2003, Glenelly was bought by May-Eliane de Lencquesaing. For over 30 years, Madame de Lencquesaing had been the owner of the classed growth Bordeaux Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande in Pauillac. Her belief in the quality of the Cape’s terroir, her wish to play a role in the economic development of the newly democratic country and her desire to continue the three century heritage of French winemaking in South Africa all played a part in her decision to embark upon a new adventure.
The 123 hectare Glenelly Estate was formerly devoted to fruit production, but after an intensive study of the soil structure and weather patterns by Madame de Lencquesaing, 54.5 hectares were planted with red grape varieties and 5.5 hectares were given to white varieties. A small remainder was planted with olive trees and the rest remained as forest. There are 5 main red grape varieties grown at Glenelly: Cabernet Sauvignon for its structure; Syrah for the fineness of red fruit aromas and flavours; Petit Verdot to bring complex notes of liquorice and violets to a blend; Merlot giving freshness and fruity notes; and finally Cabernet Franc to pair with the Merlot, giving an almost Pomerol-style character to certain wines.
A new, gravity fed winery was completed in 2009, and everything is done in as natural and as environmentally friendly a manner as possible - even the concrete used for its construction was coloured in ochre tones to match the surrounding soils!