De Wetshof Estate, situated in the limestone-rich soils of Robertson, once again cemented its position as South Africa’s most awarded producer of unwooded Chardonnay by taking a Double Gold medal at this year’s running of the prestigious Veritas Wine Awards.
At this year’s Veritas, South Africa’s leading premier wine competition, De Wetshof’s Danie de Wet Sur Lie Chardonnay 2021 captured the Double Gold. Another De Wetshof unwooded Chardonnay, Bon Vallon 2021, won a Gold medal at the 2021 Veritas show, with another Gold going to De Wetshof Sauvignon Blanc 2021.
De Wetshof has dominated the Veritas unwooded Chardonnay category since 2015. And what’s more, the crisp, fresh and bracing style that is unwooded Chardonnay is today more popular than ever among South African consumers.
“With the De Wetshof unwooded Chardonnays – Danie de Wet Sur Lie, Limestone Hill and Bon Vallon – continuously gaining acceptance at the highest competitive level as well as among the consumer, it shows that these wines are the result of our commitment to site-specific and terroir-driven wines, as well as the quest for perfection in the winery.”
De Wet says that the limestone-rich soils of Robertson have a major role to play in the region’s ability to deliver outstanding Chardonnays, including the unwooded category. “Robertson soils have the highest free limestone content of any of the Cape’s wine regions, and this was the primary motivator for Danie de Wet to pursue the planting of Chardonnay here upon returning in 1971 from his studies at Geisenheim in Germany,” says De Wet. “Limestone soils give Chardonnay perfect pH levels that drive the unique character of great unwooded Chardonnay.”
He is especially pleased with the recognition for unwooded Chardonnays over the past seven years as this is proving to be an exciting category for South African and international consumers.
“Like all our Chardonnays, the grapes for the Dane de Wet Sur Lie and Bon Vallon unwooded wines originate from vineyards growing on sites specifically suited to the style of wine that is going to be bottled,” says Johann. “These are vineyards on limestone-rich soils, with a high clay component ensuring coolness and a high water-retention capacity.
“The resulting wines are fresh and accessible, with enough complexity in structure and mouthfeel to ensure a presence on the palate,” he says. “Its popular appeal is due to its ability to accompany almost any type of food, as well as to offer wine lovers the great enjoyment of an unwooded Chardonnay.”