Zandvliet takes Gold at Chardonnay du Monde

Thursday, 8 April, 2004
Paul de Wet
Zandvliet win one of only eight Golds awarded to South African entrants
Zandvliet Estate has been awarded a gold medal for its 2003 Chardonnay at the prestigious Chardonnay du Monde wine competition in Burgundy, France.

One of only eight golds won by South African entrants, the Zandvliet award was a boon for the Roberston Wine Valley, known for its outstanding Chardonnay; and the only gold won by a Robertson entrant, making the achievement all the more exceptional.

Chardonnay du Monde is conducted at Château des Ravatys by the Forum Oenologie. The competition has attracted worldwide attention since its inauguration in 1998, with 35 countries submitting more than 1200 wines at the 2004 event. The judges, 60% of whom were from outside France, awarded 68 gold medals, 209 silver and 91 bronze medals. The overwhelming victor was France, taking 148 medals, including the only grand gold. South Africa was ranked third on the tally, taking 30 medals in total.

The winning Zandvliet Chardonnay was 30% barrel fermented for 3 months, and has a lovely, fine citrus nose; a characteristic feature of Zandvliet Chardonnays. Described as well integrated with a balanced palate, soft and fruity with good length, the 2003 vintage has an ageing potential of two years.

The Zandvliet farm is currently under its fourth generation of ownership by the de Wet family; a 130-year legacy continued by Paul, and his brother and co-owner, Vineyard Manager Dan de Wet. Long noted for its exceptional Shiraz, Zandvliet benefits from fresh breezes from Cape Agulhas, and excellent lime-rich (kalkveld) terroir.

The first attempt on Zandvliet farm at barrel-fermented Chardonnay took place in the early nineties. This early vintage was described by Paul as 'woody in a match-chewy sort of way, and toasty, in a burnt breakfast way'. A joint effort between cellar and vineyard has seen the technique perfected, with Dan de Wet using advanced technology to ensure optimum harvest ripeness, and Paul and Winemaker Johan van Wyk achieving the optimum blend.

Zandvliet 2003 Chardonnay retails for approximately R38.00 including VAT.

Zandvliet Wine Estate 
Contact: Paul de Wet
Tel: +27 (0) 23 615-1146