Although South Africa’s most popular white wine grape is Chenin Blanc, the Chardonnays from this country can be stunning. Rich flavors of citrus and tropical fruits are hallmarks of South African Chardonnay.
There is a wide range of styles from unoaked to oaked to blends and more. But the one thing that is the same is that the quality gets better all the time.
Like with just about every major wine-producing region, Chardonnay has found a way to be one of South Africa’s country’s biggest exports. The Chardonnays from South Africa range from steely wines with a clean, citrusy focus to heavily oaked ones with a rich, buttery consistency.
South African Chardonnays typically produce aromas and flavors rich in tropical fruit and exotic spices. Winemakers here like to experiment and it is even popular in Stellenbosch to blend Chardonnay with Sauvignon Blanc. Generally, the wines are simpler than French Chardonnays, and are lighter and more tropical than Californian Chardonnays.
However, some of the best producers in South Africa can compete with the best Chardonnays in the world.