2018 was the second year of an extreme drought experienced in the Western Cape of South Africa. Crop was lowered by removing bunches to limit the stress on the vines. Grapes harvested on the 1st of February 2018, around 10 days earlier than normal.
The vineyard rows run from North East to South West and the vines are on a low single strand trellis. This row direction exposes the morning sun side to the prevailing summer wind out the south and shelters these bunches from the harsher afternoon sun. The Honeybunch is made from the first pick through this vineyard. All the exposed bunches on the morning sun side only are harvested. They turn a golden colour as a result of their exposure to the sun and develope a unique honeyed character.
Age: 32 years old
Yield: 5 tons/ha
Sorting: Bunches sorted on a conveyor belt and then destemmed.
Fermentation: 12 hour maceration on the skins in the press before pressing. After an overnight settling the juice is then put to 225L and 300L French oak barrels and fermented wild. Fermentation was slow and took 7 months to complete, as in 2017 – a result of higher than normal fructose levels, an effect of the drought. The wine goes through malolactic fermentation and 1 year maturation, on the heavy lees, in the same barrels before being racked and bottled.
8% of the volume was fermented on the skins for 6 weeks in closed containers.
Maturation: 9 months in 225 and 300 litre French oak barrels. 20 percent new barrels used.
Tasting Notes & Analysis
Colour: Pale Gold
Nose: Limes, pineapple, apricots, honeysuckle, oak spice…
Palate: The palate has a limey entry and the signature honeyed mid palate followed by a distinctly saline finish which gives length and freshness.
As with all notes these are abbreviated and there is a lot more to the wine. Taste it for yourself. It will evolve and mature over the next 10 years.
13.45 % Alc.; pH 3.5; R.S. 4.0 g/l; 5,1 g/l TA; 0.8 g/L VA; 33 mg/L FSO2; 102 mg/L TSO2.