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Chenin Blanc

Learn about Chenin Blanc — taste profile, popular regions and more …

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Unquestionably one of the most diverse grape varieties, Chenin Blanc can do it all. It shines in every style from bone dry to unctuously sweet, oaked or unoaked, still or sparkling and even as the base for fortified wines and spirits. Perhaps Chenin Blanc’s greatest asset is its ever-present acidity, maintained even under warm growing conditions. While most would agree it reigns supreme when from its birthplace of the Loire Valley, Chenin is the most planted variety in South Africa. California’s Clarksburg appellation is also winning more notoriety for Chenin.

Tasting Notes for Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc makes a white wine. Drier versions commonly have characteristics of passion fruit, lemon, quince, green apple, saffron and chamomile while sweeter version express aromas and flavors such as yellow pear, white peach, melon, ginger and honeysuckle. When aged in oak, qualities like meringue and brioche can be found. Sparkling versions often have apple, ginger and floral notes.

Perfect Food Pairings for Chenin Blanc

Cool-climate Chenin Blanc has the chalky acidity to work with light seafood such as oysters and shellfish. Off-dry styles work well with the sweet-and-sour nature of Thai and Vietnamese food. The sparkling versions such as Saumur Mousseux, Vouvray Petillant and Crémant de Loire make amazing aperitif options that won’t bruise the pocketbook.

Sommelier Secrets for Chenin Blanc

South Africa actually has double the amount of Chenin Blanc planted compared to France. It is believed that either the Dutch navigator, Jan van Riebeeck, brought the grape to Cape Town in 1655 or the Huguenots fleeing France brought it in 1685. Either way, the South Africans have favored it for many centuries and make it in almost every style. Today a new wave of dedicated producers has committed to restoring old Chenin vines and finding the most ideal new spots for this prized variety.

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  • Vinum Cellars Chard-No-Way (dry Chenin Blanc) 2001
    Chenin Blanc from California
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    • Domaine Huet Vouvray Sec Le Haut Lieu 2001 Front Label
      Domaine Huet Vouvray Sec Le Haut Lieu 2001
      Chenin Blanc from Vouvray, Touraine, Loire, France
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    • Baobab Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
      Baobab Chenin Blanc 2001
      Chenin Blanc from South Africa
      • WE85
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    • Callaway Chenin Blanc Dry 2001
      Chenin Blanc from California
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      • Cloof Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
        Cloof Chenin Blanc 2001
        Chenin Blanc from South Africa
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        • Jardin Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
          Jardin Chenin Blanc 2001
          Chenin Blanc from South Africa
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          • Laboure Roi Vouvray 2001
            Chenin Blanc from Vouvray, Touraine, Loire, France
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              12 99
              12 99
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            • Beringer Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
              Beringer Chenin Blanc 2001
              Chenin Blanc from Napa Valley, California
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              • Hogue Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
                Hogue Chenin Blanc 2001
                Chenin Blanc from Columbia Valley, Washington
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                • Simonsig Estate Chenin Blanc 2001
                  Chenin Blanc from South Africa
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                  • Bogle Chenin Blanc 2001
                    Chenin Blanc from California
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                    • Barton & Guestier Vouvray 2001 Front Label
                      Barton & Guestier Vouvray 2001
                      Chenin Blanc from Vouvray, Touraine, Loire, France
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                      • Snoqualmie Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
                        Snoqualmie Chenin Blanc 2001
                        Chenin Blanc from Columbia Valley, Washington
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                          8 99
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                        • Dry Creek Vineyard Dry Chenin Blanc 2001 Front Label
                          Dry Creek Vineyard Dry Chenin Blanc 2001
                          Chenin Blanc from Sonoma County, California
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                          • Milat Vineyards Chenin Blanc 2001
                            Chenin Blanc from Napa Valley, California
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                            • Baron Herzog Chenin Blanc (OU Kosher) 2001
                              Chenin Blanc from California
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                              • Domaine des Sablonnettes Coteaux du Layon La Boheme 2001 Front Label
                                Domaine des Sablonnettes Coteaux du Layon La Boheme 2001
                                Chenin Blanc from Anjou, Loire, France
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                                • Poniatowski Vouvray Aigle Blanc 2001 Front Label
                                  Poniatowski Vouvray Aigle Blanc 2001
                                  Chenin Blanc from Touraine, Loire, France
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