WSI93+ A delicate yellow color with a hint of green suggests a vintage with good ripeness but good freshness. Fresh pineapple, yellow peach, litchi and a hint of gunsmoke greet the nose. Ripe orchard fruits are revealed on a medium-bodied palate that has lovely linearity and tension. The wine is poised and balanced, with a great combination of ripeness and mineral tension. Maturation in oak has resulted in characters of warm toasted brioche and roasted almonds, and the maturation on fermentation lees has given a creamy integration to all the flavor components. The Quinta Essentia blend is made from only the best barrels, after which the blend of different vineyards is matured for a further two months in stainless steel. The final blend was given a light fining and bottled with minimal filtration in January 2019.
Betz Family Winery has partnered with DeMorgenzon Winery in famed Stellenbosch to create an old vine Chenin Blanc using South African grapes. DeMorgenzon’s winemaking history goes back to 1699 and today is led by owner Wendy Appelbaum. The head-trained vines – called “bush vines” in South Africa – average 40 to 60 years old and yield a mere 2 tons per acre. Stellenbosch is considered South Africa’s most famous winemaking region, often described as South Africa’s equivalent to Napa Valley. It is on the Western Cape near Cape Town and has a winemaking history that goes back to the 1670s.
Quinta Essentia is made from unique old vine Chenin Blanc vineyards grown on four special sites on the foothills of the mountains in and around Stellenbosch. The old vines produce optimally ripe fruit with excellent sugar and acid balance. Cool evening temperatures of the 2017 vintage resulted in elevated natural acidity allowing the option of picking at riper brix levels. The vineyards are all mature bush vines. The vines bear their fruit about 20 inches from the ground. The mature vines benefit from a naturally lower vigor, and thereby carry their fruit in full exposure to the sun, which results in great flavor concentration. All fruit is harvested by hand. Soils are sandstone and granitic origin, and result in intensely flavored fruit, that yields wines that are intense structured and very aromatic.