Ken Forrester 2006 Chenin Blanc (Stellenbosch) – South Africa is full of sunny, inexpensive chenin that expresses a round, fat-faced fruit that’s absolutely irresistible, and also of overly-ambitious oaked versions that manage to be more interesting than most similarly-constructed New World chardonnays, but perhaps aren’t the best use of chenin blanc. Very, very few wines straddle a middle ground, but here’s one, and it’s a beauty. Richer than it would be from the Loire, and youthfully simple, but with familiar honey, chalk, wax, and quinine at a nudged-up volume, yet balanced and pure. I’ve had this with a little age (albeit from younger vines), and the expected characteristics of aging chenin were indeed on display, to the wine’s benefit. I have high hopes for this wine. (1/10)
SalilJanuary 26, 2010
I need to buy more Forrester. Really like his Petit Chenin as well.
Have you had the FMC by any chance?
thor iversonJanuary 26, 2010
I pour a lot of the "Petit" Chenin for non-wine geek parties, and it's always a hit. (It's the only wine in that range that I like, though.) In South Africa, it was an absurd $1.50 or something after exchange rates; I'd have replaced our water supply with it if I could have. ;-)
Re: the FMC, yes. For me, the best and most stylish of the oaked and aspirational versions. That will never be my favorite expression of chenin, for sure, but judged less personally the FMC was clearly a very good wine, and slightly outclassed Raats Family and others who are known for the style…better balance, overall.
Have you had the "T" (the botrytized one)? I'm a little shocked at the price they're asking here (but then, I also think they're asking too much for the FMC in Boston), but it's quite a wine. I'd be interested in how it ages.