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The Society's South African Chenin Blanc, Stellenbosch 2023

3.000000000 star rating 4 Reviews
Now sporting new Society livery, which alludes to the sustainable farming practices long employed by the Grier family at Villiera, namely pest-eating geese in the vineyards. Old bush-vines - some over 30 years old - provide a richer component to which an earlier-picked proportion is added to lift its bright stone-fruit flavour. It's worth decanting for 20 minutes or so to let it's aromas unfurl.
Price: £8.50 Bottle
Price: £51.00 Case of 6
In Stock
Code: SA20121

Wine characteristics

  • White Wine
  • 2 - Dry
  • Chenin Blanc
  • 75cl
  • Now to 2025
  • 13% Alcohol
  • no oak influence
  • Screwcap
  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan

Villiera Wines

Villiera is a large, family-owned estate on the borders of the Paarl and Stellenbosch wine regions in South Africa.

The estate takes its name from the Villiers family who were former property owners. Since 1983, Villiera has been run by the Grier family; cousins Simon and Jeff Grier are in charge of viticulture and winemaking respectively and have steadily raised the quality of the wines. Cathy Grier Brewer, Jeff’s sister, is in charge of sales and marketing and is a regular visitor to Society tastings.

The wines
The 180 hectares of vineyards are split into roughly 40% red and 60% white grapes, with different varieties being planted as consumer tastes change. There are trials for the conversion to organic viticulture as well as plans to improve the drip irrigation system, but the farm has already been insecticide free since the early 2000s, and uses a flock of Peking duck as natural pest control. The cellars and winery were first built in the 1940s but they have expanded dramatically since the Griers took over in the 1980s.

Overall, the Grier family’s approach is one of understatement as exemplified by their Down to Earth house wines which are accessible blends of ripe fruit with distinct varietal character. The mantra here is ‘turn the ordinary into an occasion’ which the Griers certainly manage to deliver through extraordinary wines at unremarkable prices. They make a wide range of wines across a broad price spectrum, including some of the...

Villiera is a large, family-owned estate on the borders of the Paarl and Stellenbosch wine regions in South Africa.

The estate takes its name from the Villiers family who were former property owners. Since 1983, Villiera has been run by the Grier family; cousins Simon and Jeff Grier are in charge of viticulture and winemaking respectively and have steadily raised the quality of the wines. Cathy Grier Brewer, Jeff’s sister, is in charge of sales and marketing and is a regular visitor to Society tastings.

The wines
The 180 hectares of vineyards are split into roughly 40% red and 60% white grapes, with different varieties being planted as consumer tastes change. There are trials for the conversion to organic viticulture as well as plans to improve the drip irrigation system, but the farm has already been insecticide free since the early 2000s, and uses a flock of Peking duck as natural pest control. The cellars and winery were first built in the 1940s but they have expanded dramatically since the Griers took over in the 1980s.

Overall, the Grier family’s approach is one of understatement as exemplified by their Down to Earth house wines which are accessible blends of ripe fruit with distinct varietal character. The mantra here is ‘turn the ordinary into an occasion’ which the Griers certainly manage to deliver through extraordinary wines at unremarkable prices. They make a wide range of wines across a broad price spectrum, including some of the Cape’s most popular bubbly.

Environmental sustainability
In 2010 Villiera installed the largest privately owned roof-mounted solar power generation facility in South Africa. It supplies most of the estate’s needs outside of harvest time.

In the vineyard they limit the amount of passes that tractors make, which both limits compaction of the soil and burns less fuel. Insecticide use has ceased and they rely on natural predators to control pests such as mealy bug. They also attract birds of prey to scare off flocks of smaller grape eating birds. In an area of water stress, the estate captures all its winter runoff water and strictly control the use of it for irrigation purposes in summer.

The family quietly gives a large percentage of its land over to conservation as part of the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative as well as planting thousands of indigenous trees and maintaining a wildlife sanctuary on site. They estimate they have planted planting 100,000 trees.

Social sustainability
Villiera Wines is home to the Pebbles Project which enriches the lives of thousands of children in the Winelands of the Western Cape by focusing on five key areas: Education, Health, Nutrition, Community and Protection.  Villiera is also home to The Owethu Clinic.

The Villiera Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centre is operated under the supervision of the Pebbles Project.  Early childhood development is provided to more than 30 children of Villiera farm workers and the fully equipped after-school club provides a safe environment where children can complete homework assignments under supervision while their parents are still at work.

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2021 vintage reviews

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