|Waterside White (South Africa) Chardonnay/Colombard 1999|
Safeway seem to be in form at the moment: this is the third time they have produced a Wine of the Week in the past month. But this is quite irresistable: a fresh and aromatic white, where the crisp liveliness of the Colombard is given weight and juicy texture by the Chardonnay. Colombard is a very unexciting grape in most of its guises. Much used for distillation, the white wines it produces tend to be rather neutral and acidic. However, Graham Beck here in South Africa has successfully used that freshness and captured fine aromatics from the grape. The pale straw colour doesn't hint at a powerful (13.5% ABV) wine, and the nose has lots of floral and exotic fruit notes. The palate is rich and full, with buttery citrus flavours and chewy texture kept sharp and focused by good acidity.
UK stockist: Safeway £4.55