De Trafford Cabernet Sauvignon 1999

VINEYARD BLOCKS

Mostly from 11 year old vines on 4 wire vertical trellis. Clone CS 46A on 101-14 rootstock. Soil gravelly red Hutton type. On low lying Helderberg mountain site. Lightly irrigated after variason.
Yield 8 tons / hect. 35% from high altitude Mont Fleur vineyard. 5 year old vines. 6% merlot incl.

VINTAGE CONDITIONS

A dry, hot summer. The ripening period was hot and dry, but thankfully not too many excessively hot days. The harvest was early with ripe, healthy grapes producing big wines with high alcohols.

Harvest date: 11 / 3 / 99 – 23 / 3 / 99 @ 23.5 – 25.6° balling.

PRODUCTION

100% destemming and crushing by hand directly into 2 ton open top fermentation tanks. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentation @ 30ºC with the cap of skins punched down 2 – 4 times a day for 12 days. Aim was to extract max. colour, flavour and tannins without undue harshness. Wine drained directly to barrels together with single pressing from traditional basket press.

All wine undergoes malolactic fermentation in the barrel. This helps integrate the new oak component and fix colour and flavour compounds. 35% new French oak and 5% new American oak was used from the high quality ” Taransaud” and “Demptos” cooperages. Time in barrels 22 months, which included several rackings to gradually clarify the wine and assist maturation development. This wine was lightly fined with egg whites ( 2 – 3 eggs per barrel ), before bottling unfiltered by hand on the property.

Bottling date : 22 December 2000 Production : 580 cases.

TASTING NOTES

Deep, dark, brooding red colour.
Pungent cassis, plum and spice nose. Evolves in the glass to show more complexity and subtlety.
Intense fruit flavours and weight on the mid palate, which follow through to a persistent finish. Dense, ripe tannins suggest great ageing potential.

Probably best between 2003 – 2010. Enjoy with rich meat dishes.

ANALYSIS

Alc. 13.99 SG.2.0 TA 5.5 pH 3.73 VA 0.66 SO2 39 & 94

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