To Compliment: Seabass, Potato and Leeks
The FMC 2010 is an exceptional expression of Chenin Blanc which is made from grapes that were handpicked, by proud local harvesters wearing golf shirts with a slogan “I Picked FMC” embroided on the back, from vines planted in 1967. Fermentation has taken place in new 400 litre French oak barrels using natural yeast which is where the wine has been allowed 12 months contact with lees. Stirring of the lees (Bâtonage) is usually weekly for greater extraction.
This is a wine that once tasted will never be forgotten! I have matched the FMC to perfectly cooked sea bass with crispy skin, potato terrine bound together with shavings of three year old Davidstow Crackler and soft leeks which is dressed with tartare dressing, made from capers, gherkins, cold smoked butter, extra virgin Cornish rapeseed oil and a highly reduced red wine reduction.
The wine seems full bodied on entry, but has a silky texture which glides elegantly across the mouth. The complex palate perfectly mirrors the aroma. Initially, lightly toasted bread with a thin layer of marmalade develops into oaky vanilla, butterscotch, honey and dried apricots with an underlying savouriness balanced by gentle acidity is the first impression which lasts…lasts…and lasts.
In 2000, The FMC was born, a venture between Ken Forrester (F) and Martin Meinert (M) to produce a wine from 100% Chenin (C), using wood. Their attempts in ’97,’98 and ’99 deemed unsuccessful making batches of wine from the best parcel of vines until 2000 when they got it right! The first official release of FMC was 2001.
Ken Forrester produces a three tier wine range. The fruit focused wines produced for everyday drinking is called Petit; these wines are made entirely from fruit derived from negociants. The next level is the Forrester range where the family is solely responsible for the cultivation and selection of fruit grown on the estate. The aptly named Icon Range is the best expression of this particular style of wine produced in the Cape.
During harvest, up to six successive pickings takes place when the grapes reach full maturity. A little botrytis is often present on the individual bunches which are selected, ensuring only limited quantities. The reason Ken is rightly considered the King of Chenin Blanc!