What We’re Toasting: Chenin Blanc

Versatile white wine originally from France now known as an iconic South African grape variety. When made dry, it pairs well with fish. As a dessert wine it marries well with nuts and cheese. CSL picks 3 chenin blanc to try now.

Chenin blanc

White wine from the Loire valley of France although South Africa is now the world’s largest producer


This light-bodied white wine is characterized by sweetness and acidity and has a multitude of expressions. In its homeland of France,  chenin blanc is made as a dry wine, and as a highly prized sweet wine (produced by noble rot or botrytis) underscored by acidity. Well-known appellations include Vouvray and Quarts de Chaume. In South Africa, the wine is made dry. Oaked chenin blanc from South Africa is gaining in popularity. Expect creamy, nutty flavours.


The dry wine pairs well with creamy sauces, fish and pâté. As a dessert wine, pair chenin blanc with soft cheese, nuts and dried fruit.

Did You Know?

60 000, approximate hectares of Chenin Blanc grown worldwide.

3 Chenin Blanc to Try

1/PROTEA 2014
refreshing fresh fruit (apricot and tangerine), light oak, $15.99; rupertwines.com

lightly oaked with nut, spice, butter and peach notes, dorrancewines.com

almond, pears, spices with a hint of citrus, foxenvineyard.com

This original on wine article first appeared in the Spring 2016 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.