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2005 Neil Ellis Wines Chardonnay Elgin
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89 Points | Stephen Tanzer's IWC - March/April 2007

($23; made entirely in new 500-liter barrels) Pale green-tinged color. Soil-inflected aromas of wet stone, flint and minerals, with a touch of smoky oak. Ripe but not particularly fruity, showing a racy lime quality that lifts the stony and leesy flavors. Densely packed and a bit youthfully tough; I'd give this another year in the bottle. Finishes with notes of pineapple and stone. Sixty percent of the wine finished its malolactic fermentation.

92 Points | Wine Spectator

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About South Africa

South Africa has produced wines in the area of Cape Town since the 17th century, but the country's significant place in the U.S. market is far more recent. During the era of apartheid, trade sanctions imposed on imports from South Africa kept these wines out of the U.S. and many other markets, with the effect that local South African winemakers had little incentive to produce wines that could compete in a global setting...
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The best Chardonnays in the world continue to arrive from the region where the grape first emerged: the chalk, clay, and limestone vineyards of Burgundy and Chablis. While the origins of the grape were disputed for many years, with some speculating that the grape came all the way from the Middle East, DNA researchers at the University of California-Davis proved in 1999 that Chardonnay actually developed...
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