2018 Testalonga El Bandito Cortez Chenin Blanc

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Craig Hawkins, along with his one-time mentor Eben Sadie, is among the most influential winemakers in South Africa. Not that most South Africans would feel the same way. Most consider his wines to be too out there. It’s a very conservative region after all. His wines are often banned from being exported. They don’t fit in the box. They’re way too good for that.

The Cortez is made from hand harvested, organic Chenin blanc fermented separately in both barrel and stainless steel. The wine marries the more savoury, Burgundian character the grape can show, with the more dusty, dirty, Savanierres-like side of Chenin. Great stuff from a true master of the varietal.