SA’s more serious wine aficionados fall into two main categories: those who think SA makes the best wines in the world, and those who think SA makes the best SA wines in the world. In the past few years these positions have moved closer together. 

The history of the Chenin Renaissance shows how and why the gap has narrowed. Until well into the 1990s SA chenin blanc was a work in progress: we had begun to exploit the potential of our vast chenin plantings and were beginning to discover the value of the old vineyards. However, we still looked to the Loire Valley in France for our aesthetic benchmarks, despite the absence of terroir similarities. We had many experimental styles, many adventurous exponents...

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