Boekenhoutskloof The Chocolate Block 2020
The make-up of the Chocolate Block is tweaked from vintage to vintage to best reflect the season and the winery’s ancient vines, meaning no two blends are ever the same and that the wine is always the absolute best it can be. This vintage shows exceptional balance and texture, with a youthful elegance. The 2020 Chocolate Block is medium bodied, covering the entire spectrum of berry fruit - from tart red plums to rich blue and black berries, with very fine, cocoa powdery tannins. The finish is svelte, peppery and lingering.
Boekenhoutskloof was established in 1776. Located in the furthest corner of the beautiful Franschhoek valley, the farm’s name means “ravine of the Boekenhout”. Boekenhout is an indigenous Cape Beech tree greatly prized for furniture making.
Boekenhoutskloof Chocolate Block is made by Marc Kent, one of South Africa's legendary winemakers. The Chocolate Block has rightfully earned it reputation as one of the UK's most popular and exclusive wines.
The 2020 harvest was preceded by an exceptional growing season which was built on the foundation of a cold 2019 winter – sufficient cold units meant perfect conditions for vine dormancy. In the spring, early and even bud-break caused homogenous shoot growth, leading to both uniform fruit set and steady ripening. Crucially though, the Swartland experienced a moderate summer and with the avoidance of spiking heatwaves, further extended the ripening period. The sum of these conditions bode particularly well for flavour and acid retention in the wines.
“The Chocolate Block 2020 relied vastly on our own fruit from Porseleinberg and Goldmine farms – this had an immense effect on the flavour and energy of this unique wine. Porseleinberg offers purity of fruit where Goldmine brings structure. The vineyards on these two stellar properties have become well-established and are beginning to show their potential.” – Marc Kent
Syrah is the predominant variety on both farms and accounts for a 73% contribution to the blend. Grenache (11%) from bush-vines on Porseleinberg is the subtle superstar of the blend that offers a perfumy brightness and allows the wine to deliver a gastronomic texture. The moderate conditions were a welcome relief for Swartland Cabernet Sauvignon (7%). The cooler, balanced growing season was particularly beneficial in providing a more elegant, old-world style of the variety. In summary: 2020 is a vintage which shows exceptional balance and texture with a youthful elegance. These hallmarks certainly favour significant ageing potential.