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DE TRAFFORD CHENIN BLANC 2017

Label by Rosalyn Trafford: "Self Portrait" for Matric Fine Art Exam

VINEYARD BLOCKS

1 block (Damarakloof) 54 year old bush vines. Managed and owned by the remarkable Agnes de Vos. Fine sand and clay soil in the Joostenberg area just outside the Stellenbosch region. Officially in Paarl, but as it's on the edge of the region, we decided to classify under the broader Coastal Region. Yield 5 tons/ha.

VINTAGE CONDITIONS

An exceptional vintage. After the hot and dry 2016 season and a dry and warm autumn, we feared insufficient build-up of reserves in the vines and possible uneven budbreak, but we had a good normal wet and cold winter and the sudden warm weather in spring helped to provide more even budbreak than expected. The growing season was quite dry and mild with moderate to lower vigour and healthy growth, producing a slightly smaller crop than usual with small berries. We had ideal cooler weather during harvest time with cool nights and no substantial heatwaves. We picked some of our Chenin just before a heavy downpour at the end of January, but the balance enjoyed the moisture relief, which we picked over the following 3 weeks.

An elegant, promising vintage, similar to 2007.

PRODUCTION

Grapes lightly crushed and allowed about 3 hours skin contact before gently pressing in a traditional basket press. Sulphur added and natural settling allowed for 2 days before

100 % barrel fermentation with natural yeasts. All the wine was fermented and matured in 2 old 700ℓ casks for 7 months with lees stirred as necessary to complete fermentation. No malolactic fermentation. Lightly fined with bentonite – a natural clay. Bottled unfiltered on the property by hand.

Bottling date: 25/9/2017 (130 x 12 x 750ml)

TASTING NOTES

Attractive pale yellow colour. Light dusty melon on the nose at first with fresh lemon and floral honey notes. Soft elegantly textured and complex palate with quite a rich mid palate and a long, slightly saline, creamy finish. Excellent with fish and sushi.

Already showing a lot of complexity - drink now to 2025.

ANALYSIS

ALC. 13.05 %    SUGAR: 1.6g/l     TA: 4.2g/l     pH: 3.60    VA: 0.43g/l     SO2: 14 free & 79 total