This natural fermented, basket pressed wine shows great balance and length. Citrus, spice and pear aromas give way to a long and dry mineral finish. Not flashy or overly fruity, but with crisp fruit, good length and minerality characteristic of the site's soils.
The Vrede Chardonnay hails from a northeast facing slope in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley with low-vigour, stony, clay-rich Bokkeveld shale soils.
Winemaker Hannes Storm worked 12 vintages in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley before he discovered two parcels of land with exceptional terroir and embarked on his eponymous project, Storm Wines. His aspiration is clear: to create wines with a sense of place. His natural approach and careful viticulture produce classically proportioned wines with distinctive personality and an innate purity.
Storm focuses on Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Located in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley and Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, their three vineyard sites – Ignis, Vrede and Ridge – each possess an individual character. Storm Wines is now the only producer with Pinot Noirs from each of the three appellations in the Hemel-en-Aarde. The Ignis vineyard is located on a northern slope in the Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. The vineyard is cluttered with round pebbles on the soil surface with underlying decomposed granite. The Ridge and Vrede sites both rest on a cool, eastern slope in the Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge, with low-vigour, stony, clay-rich Bokkeveld shale soils and a cool Atlantic Ocean influence, producing wines with high natural acidity and cool minerality.
Vinous 90pts (2017) - The 2017 Vrede Chardonnay was basket-pressed and 100% destemmed and underwent full malolactic in 25% new barrels, where it aged for eight months. It has an attractive bouquet of lemon curd, popcorn and almond, perhaps not quite conveying the same level of minerality as the finest Chardonnays from Hemel-en-Aarde. The palate is well balanced with a fine bead of acidity, not complex, but pure, offering candied orange peel and even a touch of red cherry toward the sweet, playful finish. Very fine.