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De Trafford CWG Merlot 2009

Sold exclusively on the 30th annual Cape Winemakers Guild Auction in October 2014.

A single new oak barrel selected from our Mont Fleur vineyard 400 metres above sea level.

Vineyard Blocks

15 year old vines on 7 wire vertical trellis with moveable foliage wires. Mix of “new clones” on R110 & R99 rootstocks. 'Mont Fleur' vineyard - high altitude mountain slope. Soil deep red Hutton. Yield 6 tons / hect. (39hl/ha).

Vintage Conditions

Typical cold, wet winter followed by a normal growing season with enough rain and warm weather to produce good, balanced growth. A hot, dry ripening period without excessive stress, producing concentrated wines with great structure. One of the best vintages of the decade for the patient.

A massive fire prior to harvest meant a very stressful start to the harvest, but also relief that we were spared any real damage.

Harvest date:   11 / 3 / 09 @ 24.7 ° B

Production

Handpicking into 20 kg lugboxes.  Destemming and gentle crushing directly into small 2 ton open top fermentation tanks. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentation @ max. 30°C with the cap of skins punched down manually 1-3 times a day for 12 days. Wine drained directly to barrels together with single pressing from traditional, hand operated basket press.

Malolactic fermentation took place in the barrel. I selected the best new French oak barrel after a year and moved it to a second fill barrel for the second year.

The wine was bottled unfiltered by hand on the property.

 Bottling date: 11 / 1 / 12. Production : 46 x 6 x 750ml

Tasting Notes

Rich, lively, true red colour. Fruitcake, blackberry and plum nose envelops a fine cedary oak and chalky, charcoal component. Firm, dusty tannins carry the rich fruit nicely on the palate. Probably best between 2015 and 2024.

Ideal with rare veal and creamy mushrooms, lamb or rich baked pasta. 

Analysis

Alc.14.86            SG.1.5             TA 4.9             pH 3.62             VA 0.62            SO2  4 free 13 total