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Chenin Blanc is a versatile white wine grape most commonly associated with France’s Loire Valley, but growing in popularity in other winemaking regions in the world as well. Nowadays it is synonymous with South Africa where it is the most widely planted grape variety. The Chenin Blanc grape typically buds early and ripens late, making frost a risk in cooler parts of the world where it is grown. South Africa’s climate is well suited to Chenin Blanc where it is recognized for its versatility to make different styles of wine.
Wines made from Chenin Blanc can range from dry to exceedingly sweet. Its high acidity can be vinified for a variety of different styles; a full-bodied white, sparkling wine or a dessert wine. Green apple, peach, honey and mineral notes can be expected on the palate and nose of a typical Old World style Chenin Blanc. New World styles of Chenin Blanc are often meant to be consumed young and are typically dry, crisp and fruity with a tart-like acidity.
Chenin Blanc is the perfect pair for a light lunch or a tapas-style dinner. If you are sampling a variety of appetizer-sized meals or just preparing different finger foods at home, consider pouring yourself a glass of Chenin Blanc. It pairs well with Asian-inspired foods like spring rolls or a colourful mango salad.