Stark Conde, petit sirah

Varietal:100% Petite Sirah
Rootstock: Richter 101-14
Fruit source: from our Oude Nektar farm in Jonkershoek, Stellenbosch.
Yield: 6.5 tons/h
Total production: 3990 bottles
˚B at harvest: 24.5-25.5˚
Alcohol: 14.5%
Total Acid: 5.6
Residual sugar: 2.9
Total extract: 33.9 g/l
Age of vines: 7 years
Trellis: 5-wire vsp
Irrigation:supplemental drip irrigation
Vineyard elevation: 180m

Details of vinification and oaking:

We planted this vineyard originally with the idea of blending into our syrah, but the wine was so rich and distinctive on its own we decided it warranted being bottled as a single-varietal wine. Petite Sirah (also known as Durif) is a grape that is not widely planted in South Africa, but in California it is known for producing rich and perfumed and grippy wines that are capable long ageing.

The grapes for this wine were harvested in mid-March. The grapes were cooled overnight before being de-stemmed and hand-sorted. The sorted grapes were then crushed into small, open-top fermentors and cold-soaked for two days before the on-set of fermentation. About half the wine was fermented with its natural yeasts. Fermentation occurred over a period of 7-9 days with manual punchdowns given every 4-6 hours. After fermentation, the wine was basked pressed and racked into 300-l oak barrels, all French oak, mostly 2 and 3 fill. The wine was bottled with light filtration after 12 months barrel maturation.

Winemaker’s notes:

Bold and rich with an intriguing perfume and slight earthiness. A fantastic braai wine, it has the guts to stand up to grilled meats and peri-peri. When young it might benefit from decanting.