Stellenbosch Syrah 2012

Varietal: 100% Syrah
Rootstock: Richter 110, 99
Fruit source: from our own Oude Nektar farm in Jonkershoek Valley
Yield: 6.5 tons/hectare
Total production: 7700 bottles
˚B at harvest: 24-25˚
Alcohol: 14.56%
Total Acid: 5.8
Residual sugar: 2.1
Total extract: 30.2 g/l
Age of vines: 16 years average at harvest
Trellis: 5-wire vsp
Irrigation: drip irrigation
Vineyard elevation: 240 & 310m
Slope: South West

Details of vinification and oaking:

This is a blend from 2 different vineyards at different elevations on our Jonkershoek Valley farm. The higher elevation vineyard has a finely textured decomposed granite soil and tends to produce a more elegant wine with softer tannin, while the lower vineyard is very rocky gives a denser, fruitier, more tannic wine. The grapes for this wine were hand-harvested in late-February and cooled overnight to 14 degrees C., before being carefully hand-sorted and crushed into small open fermentation vats. The must was cold-soaked for a couple of days before being inoculated with a mix of domestic and imported Rhône yeasts. About 30% of the wine underwent natural fermentation and about 5% was whole-bunch fermented. Regular, vigorous punchdowns were given every 4 hours for the first half of fermentation, then every 8 hours thereafter. At dryness (average 7-10 days), it was basket pressed and racked directly to barrel for malo-lactic fermentation and subsequent barrel maturation. A mix of coopers was used, all French oak, all 300 litre, mostly second-fill (about 25% new). After 22 months barrel maturation, the wine was bottled without fining and with just a very light polishing filtration.