Varieties : Chenin and Sauvignon - South Africa (Stellenbosch) - Dry white wine - 75 cl bottle - Serve at 10-12°C
Assemblage 78 % Sauvignon 22 % Chenin
The drive behind our Revenant range is to re-introduce a style of wine that stems from the past. Our white blend was inspired by a wine that the custodian of Waterkloof, Paul Boutinot, was making in the Loire valley in the1980`s.
We looked for sites that would produce an elegant Sauvignon blanc and settled for blocks thriving on the cool, south-facing Schapenberg slopes in Somerset West. They are a mere 5 kilometres from the ocean.
With the Chenin component, we wanted to add more richness to the palate and found a site about 10 kilometres from the ocean. The vines are all older bush vines and vary in age from 25 to 30 years. The soil is a combination of sandstone, sand and iron ferricrete.
A Gentle Hand
The winemaking philosophy is the same for all of our white wines. We follow a traditional, minimalistic approach which means that we interfere as little as possible with the winemaking process. This allows the flavours prevalent in that specific vineyard to be expressed in the bottle. All grapes are hand-picked to ensure that only the finest berries are used. We harvest according to taste and spend most of our time in the vineyards to see how the flavours develop. All grapes are sorted by hand and then whole-bunch pressed in our modern basket press to extract the juice in the gentlest way. The juice is then settled naturally for 24 hours, after which it is racked from the settling tank into 600-litre barrels, as well as our concrete eggs and a bit in stainless steel tanks. The naturally occurring yeasts or “wild yeasts” are allowed to start the fermentation process. This leads to a longer fermentation process with a slow release of aromas and a more structured palate. The natural fermentation process took between one and 4 months to complete, after which the wine was blended and left on the gross lees until bottling. We do not employ battonage nor do we add any acid or enzymes during the winemaking process, with only a light filtration and a small addition of sulphur added as a preservative prior to bottling.
And a Few Prayers to Mother Nature
The 2017/18 Growing Season The Cape experienced a very dry growing season from the end of the 2017 harvest and also during the beginning of 2018. The 2017 winter was not exceptionally cold but still colder than the previous three years, which helped to ensure an even budburst. The rainfall was the lowest that we have experienced in the last 10 years on the farm. Budburst started earlier than usual seeing that the winter was not very cold. We could see some of the first buds appear early in September. From there on the vines were struggling to grow due to the dry conditions and veraison only took place in early January. The dam levels were also low and we were only able to irrigate the younger blocks. The best practice during dry conditions is to always have a completely weed-free vineyard to prevent excessive water usage and to limit stress on the vine by suckering - sometimes this also happens naturally. In early January we did receive rain and also a bit in early February. We believe that this was the saving grace for our vines to help them ripen the fruit more evenly. During this time, we did not see excessive heat spikes and had lovely cool evenings which helped to have a longer growing season and have all the flavours develop over a longer period. Harvest started about 10 days later than in 2017. We saw a decrease in berry size on some blocks. Fortunately, little to no rot was found on the grapes, which helped to have a stress-free sorting table. Overall, we are more than happy with the quality of the 2018 harvest.
Tasting Notes from the Glass of Nadia Barnard
The Chenin gives the lovely floral and stone fruit notes which are complemented by hints of lime and citrus from the Sauvignon. The palate is fresh and shows off the vibrant citrus aromatics very nicely while it carries well with the fresh acidity. I enjoy this wine on its own, but it also goes down a treat with a fresh prawn pasta or scallop pasta dish.
• Alc% - 14% • TA 5 • pH 3.36 • RS 4.1