Harvest took place 3 days earlier than in 2018, on March 7th due to the warmer conditions. Like the chardonnay, the crop load was light 3.5 t/Ha, with harvest analysis at 12.7° baume, 3.37 pH and 5.9 g/L of acid.
Likewise, the fermentation followed a similar route to previous iterations, although 20% whole bunches were included this year to add more savoury notes and additional structure. Fermentation started after 2 days and progressed through the next 14 days with just the odd pump over followed some hand pigeage towards the end of fermentation, until fully dry. We then left the wine on skins for a further 3 days of maceration before pressing and transferring to barrels. No new oak was used, 15% second fill, 13% 3 years old, with the balance over 7 years of age. The wine completed malolactic fermentation in April, and was sulphured on its lees, where it remained until blending in January 2020. Other than SO2, no additions were made to the wine.
“A light garnet hue, beguiling and belying the flavours here. A whiff of autumnal scents from damp leaves to wood mushrooms and a scattering of Middle Eastern spice. There’s freshness throughout but there’s certainly structure, though no new oak encumbering. It has a neat, sinewy streak, with tannins stretching across the palate, ending with a tangy chinotto, blood orange flavour and a bright acid line. Mouth-watering. Screw cap. 13.2% alc.” 95 Points James Hallidays