De Trafford Old School 2014
Cabernet Sauvignon 65% WO Stellenbosch / Cinsaut 35% WO Darling
A single barrel of Cabernet Sauvignon from our best block we get from neighbouring Keermont vineyard (17 year old) on the slopes of the Helderberg, Stellenbosch. Included is another barrel of Cabernet Sauvignon from our Elevation 393 vineyard. Both similar decomposed granite soil typical of the area. The Cinsaut is from a magnificent old bush vine vineyard in Darling.
Yield approx. 4 tons / ha.
A very good, cold wet winter in Stellenbosch ensured the soil moisture supply was filled and we had even bud burst. We had cool, wet weather at the beginning of the growing season resulting in a slow start and moderate healthy growth. High rainfall in November and January meant there was no need for any irrigation. Fungal disease pressure was high in November / December, but well timed contact sprays kept the vines healthy. Bunch and berry size was a little larger than usual due to the higher rain and less wind than usual. This resulted in a little less concentrated, more delicate fresh style. Moderate temperatures and no rain over harvest meant the development of attractive fresh fruity characters. Harvest started about 2 weeks later than usual. The Darling grapes in the Swartland benefitted from the wetter than usual growing season and was an excellent vintage for the Cinsaut.
Handpicking into 20 kg lugboxes. Destemming and gentle crushing directly into small open top fermentation tanks. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentation @ max. 30 deg. with the cap of skins punched down manually 2 - 3 times a day for 12 days. Wine drained directly to barrels together with single pressing from basket press.
Time in barrel 29 months with 2/3 new French oak in the first 11 months before blending to a single 700L old oak barrel for a further 18 months.
This wine was bottled unfined and unfiltered by hand.
Bottling date: 8 / 9 / 16.
Production: 63 x 12 x 750ml
Bright deep red colour. Rich array of complex fruit and a little forest floor on the nose. Restrained and a little backward, but with obvious depth of fruit. Firm Cabernet dominant tannins, loosened a little by the cinsaut. Still needs a lot of time. Probably best between 2022 and 2030. Enjoy in a Spiegelau Bordeaux Magnum glass or something similar with rich mushroom and red meat dishes.
Alc. 14.03 SG. 1.3g/l TA 5.6g/l pH 3.71 VA 0.76 SO2 33free & 87total