B Vintners, Haarlem To Hope White, Stellenbosch, South Africa, 2021
B Vintners is a joint venture between Bruwer Raats, owner and winemaker of Raats Family Wines and his cousin, Gavin Bruwer Slabbert, who joined Bruwer as winemaker and viticulturist in 2009.
B Vintners focus on creating a small collection of single vineyard, hand-crafted wines; the first being the Muscat d’ Alexandria 2014 from a tiny vineyard in Helderberg. Minimal intervention, with an organic attitude towards the winemaking results in wines that are textural and complex.
All the vineyards are planted in the Stellenbosch area, with vines of between 10 and 65 years on old and weathered soils of decomposed granite and/or table mountain sandstone, in close proximity to False Bay. The yield is only 6 to 8 ton per ha.
Mimimal intervention - whole bunch pressing, fermented and aged in old oak with resting on lees for 10 months - only the Muscat was fermented and aged in Stainless Steel, then assembled, naturally stabilised and then bottled.
% wine oaked: 96
% new oak: None
The wine has bright fruit concentration on the nose, which follows through onto the palate. There is tension and excitement all at once. Nectarine, pear and melon are given depth by touches of spice, lemongrass and ginger, while hints of florals are a further dimension. Time in oak, with close lees contact, has helped to give the wine breadth and depth, still remaining fresh and focused, with a saline and savoury finish.
Peri-peri pork belly, whole grilled yellowtail and ratatouille, crispy artichoke.
Tim Atkin South Africa Report 2022 92 Points
Haarlem to Hope is a separately fermented cuvée of Chenin Blanc and 30% Semillon which has not featured Muscat since 2020. Aged in older oak, stainless steel and concrete, it has aromas of beeswax and sourdough bread, nuanced oak spices and flavours of aniseed, pear and lemon butter. 2022-27. 92 Points, TA, September 2022.
Vinous 92 Points
The 2021 Haarlem to Hope, which has been honed down to a Chenin/Semillon blend, has quite a complex bouquet, leans more on the pithy side with lemon sherbet, orange rind and light eucalyptus notes. The palate is fresh on the entry with fine acidity, quite understated at first with a texturally satisfying almost grassy finish. Excellent. 92 Points, NM, August 2022.
Chenin Blanc 70%
6 x 75cl