The Smiley NV Chenin Blanc V4 is our fourth release of our multi-vintage Chenin blend. Wines for this version were selected from four different vintages spanning 2015-2018. The wine is made from fruit sourced from multiple parcels on the granitic Paardeberg terroirs of the Swartland. The wines are all naturally fermented with nothing added. Fermentation takes place in a combination of seasoned oak barrels and stainless steel tank.
Small batches are selected for under flor yeast ageing and others for Madeira style ageing to create characterful wines for the final blend. Once a year we draw from the various vintages of matured wines to blend with the fresh wine for bottling as the Smiley release. After fermentation is completed of the current vintage, various wines are tasted and selected for blending into the Smiley whilst others are held back for future releases.
The nose presents with forward Chenin Blanc citrus notes of lemon peel, mandarin and stone fruits of peach and apricot. Herbal and floral notes of green tea and chamomile flowers are followed with hints of waxy macadamia, pistachio and almond bringing forward the flor and Madeirised components. Mineral notes of seaweed, oyster shell, iodine, ocean mist and kelp are present after the wine begins to breathe finishing off with a honey, pear drop and cinnamon-ginger spice fullness. The palate is weighty, round and full yet fresh, taut and zesty. Upfront the minerality of sea shells and Maldon salt are balanced with the liveliness of fresh citrus notes. The palate is rounded off with the richness of raw almonds, coconut shavings and pistachio shell. The texture is mouth-coating with a persistent finish of tart, fresh lemon, orange peel and cardamom pods.
Drink now until 2028. Best paired as an aperitif with olives, charcuterie and tapas style foods, seafood, white meat, fresh salads, sushi and will compliment the end of a meal paired with hard cheeses. We suggest decanting this wine prior to drinking.