(2023) Though home is undoubtedly still Stellenbosch, Ken now has a few wine emanating from Swartland. Aged in all old barrels after spontaneous ferment, this is deep, apricot, creamy and waxy, honeyed stuff. Beautiful, unctuous with lemon jelly fruitiness and a long, shimmering finish.
(2020) What a beautiful wine, from 50-year-old unirrigated vines in Swartland, fermented in barrle with wild yeasts, and only 3,400 bottles produced. There's a definite whiff of gunsmoke and flint, then a lemon peel and apple brightness of fruit, but quite complex and very appealing. In the mouth that thrust and vigour of the citrus punches through, with excellent concentration and a bit of leesy richness of texture, a hint of creaminess, the finish long and tapering to a fine point. A lovely Chenin by any account.
(2019) From Swartland fruit, the funkiest, toasty nose, a touch of marmalade in this old Chenin, just a beautiful fruit sweetness and precision on the palate, but flooded with flavour but that precision of salts and minerals and the wild ferment touch of funkiness and tobacco. Again, no retail availabilty at time of reveiw.
(2019) From two vineyards of dry land Chenin Blanc bush vines, planted in 1980 and 2002. Fermented and aged in small and large oak barrels, this has sweet earth on the nose and sour lemon and lemon rind fruit. The palate is all about orange and clove, the skin-contact giving grip and a real whip of acidity and tannin finishing very briskly and racily.
(2019) Around 19% Verdelho, from Swartland, and Chenin from Swartland old vines with a little from Bot River. Natural yeast and very little intervention. Older oak, large barrels. Very little oak influence, just a touch of almondy undertone. Nice spices here, touches of ash and tobacco, touches of clove and wheat beer. Lovely pure, light and fresh lemon and lime fruit. There is lovely sweetness here, like the juiciest orange or lime, into a long, lightly spicy finish.
(2019) Weighing-in with only 12.5% ABV, this fruit comes from a 1964 vineyard in the Swartland. Really lovely Brazil nut character, but lots of funkiness, the butter and lanolin beneath, some floral elegant hints and although only 12.5%, no sign of greenness, just a terrific acidity that is tangy and salty. Beautifully balanced.