A A Badenhorst Family Red 2017
The vineyards – Mostly old bushvines planted in the 1950’s and 1960’s to Chenin Blanc, Cinsault and Grenache. The vines are unirrigated and farmed as biologically as possible. The vineyards are planted on north, east, and south facing slopes bringing tremendous variety to the fruit. Fruit from other selected sites within the appellation are also purchased to complete the final blends.
The soils – Three distinct types of granites are found here, namely the Paardeberg-, Lammershoek- and Lemoenfontein-type plus different sub-surface geology including clay, weathered granite and some serious shale.
The winemaking – All fruit, red and white, is whole bunch-handled so no crushing or destemming takes place. The whites are transferred directly to old casks or into concrete tanks for fermentation and ageing. The red grapes are fermented in concrete tanks and open wooden kuipe. The post fermentation maceration is lengthy – up to 4 months -whereafter the wines are put to cask or 4000L foudres. No additions are done to the grapes other than sulfur before and after fermentation.
The inspiration – The great old wines of South Africa and the discarded varietals, the bottles of which can be found in the forgotten corners of old cellars before modern methods and fame came along and changed the purity of the wines.
The 2016 is a blend of Shiraz, Mourvedre, Grenache and Cinsault. The tannins are prominent and well integrated and refreshing as a number of the parcels were picked quite early. The aromas are brooding but with complex notes of pepper, liquorice, perfume and black cherries. The palate entry is quite dense with lavender and dark berry fruit. The finish is dry with well spread tannins ending with savoury and currant flavours.