|The Stellenbosch estate of L'Avenir was founded only in 1992, but rose rapidly through the ranks of
South Africa's best wine producers to become something of an icon label, producing only around 25,000 cases of wine per year, but all of the highest quantity.
In October 2005 Chablis producer Michel Laroche staged quite of a coup when he purchased the domaine from its founder for an undisclosed sum. Laroche is partnered in the venture by AXA Insurance (who have
wine interests around the globe) and it seems likely that even bigger and better things are on the cards for the L'Avenir estate.
This small tasting of L'Avenir's wines was extremely impressive. The wines are now being brought into the UK by Bibendum Wines, so availability of these very sought-after wines should also improve.
L'Avenir (South Africa) Chenin Blanc 2005
Dry-farmed Chenin from a 30-year-old vineyard, this shows what marvellous potential this grape has in the Cape when grown and handled carefully. It has a lovely nose: rich, mealy, with plenty of nutty and apple fruit and a sense of depth. On the palate there's an immediate sweetness, with plenty of racy, crisp pear and apple and a little hint of more tropical ripeness. Lovely acidity is crisp but integrated and supportive. Beautiful stuff. 89/100. £8.99.