De Trafford Cabernet Franc 2012
Keermont Vineyard 60%
This site high up on the SW side of the Stellenbosch mountain 380m above sea level and looking across to the eastern side of the Helderberg and further afield across Cape Town to Table Mountain, just screamed out to be planted to Cabernet Franc. Cool, clayish, decomposed granite soils too exposed to wind for Merlot. Vertical trellis. 5 yr old vines. Clone CF623 on R110 rootstock.
Yield 5 tons/ha.
Mont Fleur Vineyard 40%
Steep sloping, north facing slope, 400m above sea level. New “Tip Top” vineyard. 9yr old vines on 7 wire vertical trellis. Clones CF1 & CF214 on 101-14 rootstock. Vine density 5000 vines/ha with row widths 1.8m. Medium deep quite poor red Hutton soil of decomposed granite.
Yield 3 tons/ha
Winter 2011 was colder than usual, but with average rainfall resulting in excellent, even bud-break. We had good growth in spring, but poor weather (cold and rain) over the flowering period resulting in uneven flowering and berry set. We paid extra attention to green harvesting to help make up for this. Disease pressure was managed with well-timed sprays and open, small canopies. January was exceptionally hot, which really jolted the vines into ripeness. The ripening period of February and March was much cooler and close to perfect, with not much rain, and we’re extremely satisfied with the 2012 vintage.
Harvest date: 6/3/12 – 14/3/12
100% destemming and crushing by hand directly into small open top fermentation tanks. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentation @ 30ºC with the cap of skins punched down 2 – 4 times a day for 12 to 14 days. Wine drained directly to barrels together with single pressing from traditional basket press. All our wine undergoes malolactic fermentation in the barrel. 35% new French oak was used from high quality coopers. Time in barrels 19 months with several rackings to gradually clarify the wine. This wine was bottled unfiltered by hand on the property
Bottling date: 20 / 11 / 13
Production: 189 x 12 x 750mℓ
Deep red colour. Attractive bright red fruit on the nose with typical spicy, dry leaf Cabernet Franc notes. A subtle dusty cedar from the barrel maturation adds complexity. Soft bright red fruit on palate with nice ripeness and elegant understated structure. Drink young to enjoy the fresh red fruit character, but should keep at least 10 years.
Alc. 15.06% SG. 1.4 g/ℓ TA 5.4 g/ℓ pH 3.49 VA 0.72 SO2 5free 39total