The Ken Forrester Petit Chenin Blanc 2019 is a young wine sourced from vineyards in the Stellenbosch region of South Africa. Ken Forrester is one of the leading wineries in South Africa, their farm dates back to 1689 with grapevines first planted in 1694. Ken Forrester bought the rundown derelict estate in 1993 and started producing wine in 1994. he is acknowledged as one of the best growers of Chenin Blanc.
The Stellenbosch region is situated in the Western Cape not far from Cape Town. It is one of the oldest wine-producing areas in South Africa and is considered to be an elite growing region. The summers are warm and dry and the climate is considered to be similar to the Mediterranean, think Italy or the south of France. Chenin Blanc is a grape that is originally from the Loire Valley in France. But like how now Sauvignon Blanc is well known from New Zealand, South Africa is the place for Chenin Blanc.
The Petit is the wine name that means this is a “young” wine that receives little or no aging. These are the real drink-it-now wines, the sooner you drink it from its release date the better. These are wines that are not meant to be put away for a year or two. In 2020 drink the 2019 vintage, next year in 2021 grab the 2020 vintage. South Africa has its seasons the reverse of the US, these grapes were probably picked last May.
Give them a little time to produce the wine, maybe a little bit of aging, a month or two and then the bottles are shipped out. As a young wine, this Chenin should be bright, crisp and fruity/citrus. Chenin Blanc is an extremely versatile grape, it can get the full winemakers treatment with loads of oak barrel aging that will cellar for decades, or made into wonderful sparkling wine, and everything on down to a young drink-it-now wine.
That may well be one of the reasons that a delicious wine such as Chenin Blanc is not more popular. It can take on so many personalities that you may love one brand and not be impressed by the next. Chardonnay is also a versatile grape, but most US wine drinkers know what to expect from California Chardonnay in each price range. They are all different, but usually variations on a theme. Chenin is more of a mystery from one bottle to the next. But not with the Ken Forrester Petit Chenin Blanc 2019, a young Chenin Blanc should have reliable characteristics. the alcohol content is 13%.
Ken Forrester Petit Chenin Blanc 2019 Tasting Notes
The color is pale wheat yellow. The nose is pretty, tangerine, peach, pear, apple, lemon/lime, spring flowers, and pink grapefruit. This is a very tasty wine with a more substantial mouthfeel than I was expecting for a young wine. The mouthfeel has a lightly syrupy feel, it tastes of a mix of lime, apricot, orange, and light spice. There are lemon curd and green apple.
The mid-palate adds a salty sensation, a little tropical fruit, and tart grapefruit. the acidity is real good, it allows the flavors to unfold and will have you smacking your lips and reaching for the next sip.
- The Ken Forrester Petit Chenin Blanc 2019 is a delicious, reasonably priced (I found it on sale for $11.99) White wine.
- Yes, it is a young wine, but there are loads of flavors and a ton of personality. This is a very likable wine.
- This is one of those wine where you need to buy twice as many bottles that you originally intended to, don’t worry there won’t be any leftovers.