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    Vuurberg White '20


    Vuurberg White '20

    You can usually find a few wines made by Donovan Rall on our shelves, and his winemaking projects are always a favorite to highlight. Vuurberg (pronounced “Feer-berg,” and which means “fire mountain”) is a garage-style winery near Zorgvliet on the Helshoogte Pass, winding around the eastern side of the Simonsberg Mountain, between Stellenbosch and Franschhoek. Only two wines are produced at the estate, a red and a white, and they are made by Rall, who worked with Miles Mossop at Tokara and Eben Sadie before beginning his own projects. Although made in small quantities, his wines have helped bolster the reputation of South African wines overall.

    The Vuurberg white is a full-bodied blend made of about 50% Chenin Blanc, 20% Viognier, and 10% Grenache Blanc, with smaller amounts of Verdelho and Roussanne. All the fruit is mountain grown and from estate vineyards, mainly in Stellenbosch, with small parcels from Swartland, Franschhoek, and Paarl. Depending on the variety, the grapes are either crushed and destemmed or transferred directly into a small, manually operated basket press to be processed as whole bunches. Fermentation is carried out with natural yeasts. The wine is matured in a combination of French barrique and 400-liter barrels, and the final blend is assembled after the wine has rested on the lees for nine months, without bâtonnage (stirring). It is coarsely filtered before bottling.

    While the wine shows the ripeness of its fruit, with a range of citrus, stone, and tropical notes, all the parts balance the whole. The wine’s structure supports the aromatic fruit-and-floral richness, its acidity adding energy and freshness. This is a great example of a fuller-bodied white blend that is surprisingly versatile in terms of pairing options, as varied as the blend itself.


    South Africa


    Producer Vuurberg


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    Near North

    Mon–Fri Noon–8 / Sat 11–7
    Closed on Sunday

    1167 N Howe Street
    Chicago, IL 60610

    Sounds good!