Brookdale Single Vineyard Chenin Blanc 2020

Tasting Notes

When Englishman Tim Rudd purchased Brookdale it was a dilapidated farm that was overgrown, neglected, and in need of some serious work. When the renovation process was started they noticed one particular block of older vine Chenin Blanc that was thriving. From this single block of Chenin Blanc, planted in 1985 on decomposed shale, has become one of the Cape’s new up and coming Chenin Blanc. Under the guidance of young female winemaker Kiara Scott, the goal is to make extraordinary wines. She is on track, as the 2020 Brookdale Single Vineyard Chenin Blanc is a wine to take note of.

In just its 4th release, the 2020 Brookdale Single Vineyard Chenin Blanc has really come into the limelight with a number of glowing reviews that speak highly of its exceptional quality and helps highlight why Chenin Blanc out of the Western Cape is so impressive. This represents value, and also has the structure for some good mid-term aging. Stocks are limited.

Winery: Brookdale
Varietal: Chenin Blanc
SKU: BROCHE2020 Categories: ,
Bottle Size: 750 ml
Brookdale Chenin Blanc 2020



95 pts/Gold Medal – Decanter World Wine Awards 2022

Clear, bright, and youthful with an intensely ripe tropical fruit nose with a slight reduction giving added dimension. The palate opens into flavours of baked apples, stone fruits, citrus blossom, sweet vanilla, and a delicious flinty-mineral expression which ends the wine with mouthwatering acidity.

95 pts Greg Sherwood MW June 2022

Now a designated single vineyard Chenin Blanc, and newly labelled as such, the 2020 certainly rises to the challenge to offer an old vine intensity and quality that exceeds anything released from Brookdale previously. Everything is text book here and assembled with absolute precision. The aromatics burst forth with lofty notes of tangy sweet and sour yellow citrus, wet straw, hints of pineapple pastille and sweet herbal notes of fynbos and dried thyme. Fabulous lift and intensity continue to the opulent palate that shows an impressive concentration of white peach and citrus fruits with a tangerine kiss underpinned by fabulously tangy acids and a pronounced stony wet river pebble minerality on the long, unctuous finish. A wine with a revved up complexity and intensity but also a delightfully sophisticated balance. This is top level Tetris where all the blocks have slotted in together seamlessly to create a wine of beauty. Enjoy on release and over the next 10 to 12+ years

93 pts Tim Atkin MW 2022

Brookdale source their top Chenin Blanc from a 35-year-old parcel in Paarl, fermenting the result in a combination of foudres and 500-litre barrels. Tangy, focused and well-balanced, with nutmeg and aniseed aromas, some cream from malolactic fermentation and a waxy, stony core. 2022-28

4 ½ Stars 2023 Platter’s South African Wine Guide

Fractional picking, wholebunch wild ferment/19 months mainly seasoned barrel & foudre, 20 (93 pts) is a complete contrast to its Mason sibling. Quince, bruised apple, wild honey, an overlay of thatch, crafted for very long ageing.

92 pts Wine Advocate Dec 2023

Grown on shale soils, the 2020 Chenin Blanc comes from a single vineyard and offers layers of complexity with aromas of underripe peach and hints of pineapple with touches of oak and yellow apple skin. Medium to full-bodied, there is succulent acidity with delightful weight and texture in the mouth before it leaves behind a spicy, lingering finish. It’s a fantastic Chenin Blanc that brings me back for more. 2022-2033


Winemaker Notes

When Tim Rudd first acquired the land of Brookdale, it was overgrown and underused. As Tim and the team began to clear the land, replant indigenous trees and shrubs, and plant new vines, they happened across something remarkable… A single block of Chenin Blanc had been quietly thriving on one of the slopes at Brookdale Estate and held immense potential.

The block was to yield the first vintage of Brookdale Chenin Blanc from the then 35-year-old vines. The Chenin Blanc stands proudly as a wine of outstanding character made in a large format especially for a marriage with food on the palate. It is spoken about lovingly by wine aficionados and casual drinkers alike. With exquisite detail, nuanced balance and an impactful flavour profile, the Brookdale Chenin Blanc rivals the classic white wines of Burgundy.

From old vine Chenin Blanc (1985) grown on decomposed shale and granite; minimal winemaking was employed to allow this stony terroir to shine through. The grapes were hand-picked at different stages to achieve optimal ripeness and balance.
The fruit was pre-cooled and gently whole-bunch pressed before spontaneous fermentation and partial malolactic fermentation added elegance, and complexity. Matured for 11 months in 500L French oak barrels, the wine was then aged on the lees for 8 months in 2000L Foudre barrels. Once bottled, the wine was left to mature for a further four months before release.

Unmasked, crushed stones unspool while limey, powdered chalk rides a wave of white citrus and white pear, underpinned by subtle oak spice. On the palate, the sensational white fruit continues. The mineral structure presents vertical and endless, enlivened by soft buoyant acids and a mouth-coating citrus purity. The finish is luminous, with a real granitic freshness. A study in the balance of dichotomy, this is a wine of bold flavour, nuanced character and precise equilibrium.


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