2014 Crystallum "The Agnes" Chardonnay Hemel-en-Aarde / Overberg
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Cool, discreet nose hints at menthol. Tightly wound and quite dry, with flavors of stone fruits, lemon oil and nut oils complemented by a touch of sweet oak (just 10% new). Very concentrated, tactile wine with excellent firming acidity. Finishes cool, dry, classic and long, with a lingering note of peach oil and a subtle saline character.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2014 The Agnes Chardonnay, a blend of different vineyards, has quite a refined, understated bouquet that is nicely defined with touches of flint and citrus lemon coming through with aeration. The palate is fresh and crisp, very tensile with a touch of bitter lemon on the entry. A little awkward at the moment, there is something almost Muscadet-like towards the finish, with a light sea-spray influence. Very fine.
Crystallum is an awesome project from “young gun” winemaker and “Zoo Biscuits Wine Gang” member Peter-Allan Finlayson. His father, Peter Finlayson, is pretty much South African winemaking royalty. Peter-Allan is part of a younger generation of winemakers really putting modern South African wines on the map for all the right reasons. This “crew” makes great wines, surfs, Braais and generally has fun. It’s fine wine without any pretentious snobbery—and I love it. Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate has this to say about Peter-Allan: “Sometimes you meet a young winemaker whose enthusiasm and approach makes an impression…you intuitively feel that they are one to watch, perchance a star of the future.” The Crystallum wines combine a very Burgundian sense of restraint with a modern acid line and purity of varietal expression. (Ryan Woodhouse, K&L South Africa wine buyer)