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De Trafford Elevation 393 2010

A SINGLE VINEYARD wine from the beautiful Mont Fleur farm set at the top of a dramatic valley above Stellenbosch, 393 metres up between the Stellenbosch and Helderberg mountains. The property is owned and run by the Trafford family with a small team of dedicated workers. An elevation of the family house, which is the middle of the vineyard, appears on the label - drawn by former Architect David Trafford.

 

Mont Fleur Vineyard 

This blended wine best reflects our magnificent vineyard site high up (393 metres) on the eastern slopes of the Helderberg mountain. Soil deep red decomposed granite - Hutton type. The vines are close planted (5000 to 7500 vines / ha.) The best barrels were selected for this reserve wine:

 

Merlot 42%

16 yr old vines on 7 wire vertical trellis. Clone MO181 on R99 rootstock. 3 tons/ha (18 hℓ/ha)

Shiraz 29%

15 yr old vines on 7 wire vertical trellis. Clones SH21A; SH1A; SH99 all on 101-14 rootstock. 3 tons/ha (18 hℓ/ha)

Cabernet Sauvignon 29%

16 yr old vines on 7 wire vertical trellis. Clones CS337; CS359; CS27: CS46A; CS1A; CS163 all on 101-14 rootstock. 3 tons/ha (18 hℓ/ha)

 

These yields equate to around 1 kg fruit per vine, arguably the threshold for the production of GREAT wine. 

Vintage Conditions

A cool, overcast, rainy spring led to poor fruit set and smaller, looser bunches. Very strong winds during flowering dramatically reduced the size of the crop as well as causing some physical damage. The small crop contributed to faster ripening with very ripe grapes of great intensity. A hot, dry harvest, but all of our Syrah and Merlot was picked before the mid-March heat wave, hence the blend is atypically based more on these two varieties, rather than the two Cabernets.

 

Production

Handpicking into 20 kg lugboxes. 100% destemming and gentle crushing directly into open top fermenters. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentation @ max. temp. 29°C - 31°C. Time on skins 12 - 15 days, with cap of skins punched down (pigeage) 1 – 4 times a day. Wine drained directly to barrels together with single pressing from traditional basket press.

Mostly new French oak used. Time in barrel 22 months, which included several rackings to gradually clarify the wine and assist maturation.

This wine was bottled by hand, unfined and unfiltered, on the property.

Bottling date: 25 / 1 / 2012

Production: 330 x 6 x 750mℓ

 

Tasting Notes

Deep red colour. A multitude of spices and a rich blackcurrant nose. Full rich palate with plenty of complex blueberry, blackcurrant and spice flavours. Soft, but firm tannins on the mid palate and dusty dry tannins on the long finish. Drink 2016 to 2028.

 

Analysis

Alc. 15.53               SG.2.2               TA 5.3               pH 3.66               VA 0.75               SO2 5 & 23