But Why 2021100% Ceres Plateaux Cabernet Sauvignon. 735 meters above sea level in the heart of the "Koue Bokkeveld". The Story
Way back, midway through harvest 2015, a friend showed up at the Winery carrying two Pick&Pay bags filled with ripe grapes. Each bag contained a representative sample of a vineyard. “Do you want to buy this?” he asked. “What's the story?” I threw the question back at him.
His answer intrigued me: both vineyards were planted as un-grafted vines 750 meters above sea-level in decomposed sandstone in the Koue Bokkeveld - on the Ceres Plateau… Now planting Shiraz in the mountains made sense, but my first words when he told me the other bag contained Cabernet Sauvignon were: “BUT WHY would anybody think of planting Cabernet so high above sea-level?”. Normally height above sea-level equals cool temperatures during ripening and it’s common knowledge that the biggest challenge for Cabernet producers are unripe, green tannins. But, what the heck! I thought the story was great and for the first time ever I committed to making wine from vineyards I had never set eyes on.
Today, 8 years later, we know a lot more. What I did not know back in 2015 was that the site’s radiation levels (intensity of sunlight) were off-the-charts high, not the temperature... the sunlight! You know when you are standing on a snow-covered slope high on the Alps in Switzerland? On a clear day the sunlight is warm and intense but the temperatures are still low. Same thing.
Combine these conditions with very cold night temperatures and you get a longer hang time (the time the grapes spend attached to the vine). It slowly accumulates sugar while absorbing massive amounts of sunlight, and sunlight is what ripens. And when we pick in early April, the grapes have moderate sugar levels, ripe tannins and high acids.
So today is the release of BUT WHY 2021 - to show the world EXACTLY WHY there happened to be Cabernet Sauvignon planted at 750m above sea-level on the Ceres Plateau.
(By the way: the grapes from the first bag became arguably our most famous vineyard - Little William)
Amount of Bottles Produced: 1760
Vineyard: 750 meters above sea-level Ceres Plateaux grapes in sandstone soil planted with un-grafted vines. Vines trained according to the vertical shoot positioning method on a traditional 3 wire trellis system.
Winemaking: The grapes were picked at optimal ripeness and cooled overnight to 4 degrees celsius. The next morning the grapes were destemmed to open top fermenters. The juice underwent spontaneous fermentation and stayed on the skins for as long as possible. Pressed into 30% new French oak small barrels, 18 months in barrel, blended and bottled.
Alcoholic Strenght: 14%Acidity: 5.65g/lPH: 3.53Reducing Sugar: 1.38g/lFree SO2: 37mg/lTotal SO2: 93mg/lVolatile Acidity: 0.74g/lClosure: Natural CorkVegan: YesVoice recordingHow to order
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