I'm now onto the 2016 vintage of this wine which is just as good as the 2015.
In Ataraxia's words:
"Hemel-en-Aarde is Afrikaans for “heaven and earth”
and the claim is justified. Our estate sits on a particularly heavenly stretch of land beneath a lofty peak of the Babylon’s Tower mountain range. In addition to its unrelenting beauty, Ataraxia is home to some of the most spectacular terroirs South Africa has to offer
In 2004, The Skyfields Farm was visioned into the Ataraxia wine label when husband and wife, Kevin and Hanli Grant and a few friends purchased this 47-hectare prime vineyard property.
More than a decade later, we are associated with crafting wines of incredible finesse, balance and depth
; wines that proudly hold their own on the international wine stage."
I really was amazed by the quality of this wine when I first tasted it in February 2017; I waited impatiently for it to arrive in the warehouse and am still writing my full tasting notes. In short it is spectacular, a top quality Chardonnay with complex flavours of fruit plus flinty minerality and a lovely creamy texture.
Read also what the producer says below - and the reviews by Decanter's expert panel who awarded it 96 points in a blind tasting.
Like many Chardonnays this wine will work well with richer dishes such as foie gras, chicken, ham, pork or veal in creamy sauces, parmesan cheese, mushrooms and truffles. But it is light enough not to overpower lighter dishes such as fish, seafood and chicken
"In the most accurate and faithful way possible, our unapologetically wooded white wine mirrors the terroir in which our Chardonnay vines are grown. In other words, it is an expression of the low vigour, stony, clay-rich Bokkeveld Shale derived soils and the heavily maritime-influenced climate. Made using uncomplicated (not simple) winemaking techniques, this is an athletic, chiseled and precise wine. It embraces the very adult tastes of salinity, brininess and minerality, all of which are the hallmarks of the great and classic white wines of the world."
From Decanter magazine: