Edgebaston David Finlayson Camino Africana Chenin Blanc 2013
Sourced from a vineyard planted in 1947, reported to be one of the oldest in South Africa, a mere 50 cases of this wine was produced. The nose is a composite of oxidized apples, minerals, quinine and lees. Concentrated yet seamless, there’s a taut minerality that lies inside the wine’s silky, creamy texture, while the finish is quite lengthy with touch of honey sweetness on the back end. Quite impressive this should really evolve over the next couple of years. The fruit is very subdued while mineral and earth tones dominate. This is a very serious expression of the varietal and the terrior it comes from.
90 pts Stephen Tanzer/Vinous June 2015
2013 Edgebaston Camino Africana Chenin Blanc Single Vineyard Old Vine Deep straw-gold. Very ripe aromas and flavors of stone fruits, honey and marzipan. Ripe, creamy and deep, offering excellent concentration and a touch of sweetness that belies its low 2.2 g/l r.s. Finishes rich and long, with sexy marzipan and oak notes and a rather soft phenolic element. This reminded me of an old-style Vouvray. — Stephen Tanzer
89 pts Robert Parker Jr.’s The Wine Advocate
The 2013 Camino Africana Chenin Blanc comes from the Bottelary Hills subregion from bush vines planted back in 1947 and is fermented and matured in two new French barrels, followed by 11 months on the lees. It has plenty of tropical-tinged fruit on the nose: pineapple, papaya, citrus lemon and star fruit, although I was expecting a little more nuance. The palate is balanced with lively citrus fruit laced with orange zest and rose water, well-judged acidity with a lilting, harmonious finish. This may warrant a higher score down the line – good potential but not cheap.
This is reportedly the second oldest recorded vineyard of Chenin Blanc in South Africa, planted in 1947, the wine was made with the absolute minimum intervention and to allow the old vines to express the true flavours of the site and variety with as gentle a human touch as possible. The wine has an unmistakable minerality and the Salty, Umami flavour on the palate that can only be found when vines have struggled for decades to make their mark in the soil. This wine signifies something truly special to me as a winemaker and is part of my journey in life and wine in South Africa, hence the name, Camino Africana, “The African Way” – David Finlayson