Harvest

Our harvest period runs from mid February until mid April. Grapes are handpicked in the vineyards at the lowest possible temperatures and taken to the cellar in order to start the production process.

A winemaker can only work with what they receive from nature.

Sorting and Pressing

Upon arrival at the cellar, the grapes are hand sorted on the sorting table and all unripe and inferior quality berries removed. From there the grapes go through the destemmer and crusher where the stems are removed and the berries are cracked open ever so slightly. In the case of white grapes, the juice is drawn off the skins and pumped to the settling tanks where the juice will be settled clearly before moving it into the fermentation vessels which can be either wooden barrels or stainless steel tanks. In the case of red grapes, the juice remains on the skins to extract its flavors and rich colour. This carefully monitored extraction is aided by regular punch-downs which are done by hand and plays a vital role in the style of wine that the winemaker has in mind. Sometimes their gut feel can also play a role here….but we, as winemakers, would call it “experience” for now.

Barrique

To wood or not to wood, if it were only that simple! Such a controversial and most discussed subject with winemakers, and wine lovers as well. We have chosen to use a mixture of French, Hungarian and American Oak, and a variety of new, 2nd, 3rd or 4th fill barrels. Some serve as traditional wood-support, and some serve simply as a vessel. All have different influences, and we enjoy the complexity and structure the wood adds to some of our wines. Reds are barrel aged, and some we keep in our cellar in the bottle before releasing them.

Wild Yeast, Fermentation and Aging

Motivated by the desire to get closer to our “place”, we have been letting some of our wines ferment with their own yeast. Thousands of yeast spores are carried in on the skins of the grapes, and instead of giving the mash a boost of industrial yeast, we put our trust in our terroir, and let the juice do it’s thing. To our great joy, we have not yet had to inoculate any wines we let ferment with wild yeast. To make things really exciting, we decided to try natural yeast barrel fermentation with red grapes for some of our pinotage. It ticked away, fermenting slowly and gently, and seems to be very well served by the spores nature has given it. Wines intended to be most fruit forward, we have chosen to ferment and age in stainless steel tanks, so the pure, fresh flavors are enhanced.

Bottling and Labeling

Being an Estate and making mention of our products on the labels as „Estate Wine of Origin“, the whole production process must be carried out on the Estate, including bottling and labelling. Since bottling is an extremely important part of the production process, great care is being taken to ensure that the wine is filled into the bottle at counter pressure to ensure that as little oxidation takes place as possible.

The labelling process is also done on the Estate and we make use of a system of “double quality control” where the wines are firstly labelled onto storage sheets and then only after that packaged into the correct cartons. This ensures that each bottle can be examined twice before reaching the end consumer.

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