De Trafford Chenin Blanc Four V
One of three label painting set by Rita Trafford titled: Pond Studies
Wine Spectator Score: 90, read the tasting notes by James Molesworth here.
This is a unique one-off production of 4 vintages of De Trafford Chenin Blanc. This wine was inspired by one exceptional 700L barrel 2009 that took 2 years to ferment dry, well almost, and at every stage of its long journey from the shackles of sugar, it tasted delicious! At the same time we had another 700L barrel 2010 that underwent a similar journey, so it seemed obvious to combine them and throw in three 225L barrels of the latest 2011 vintage to freshen things up. Oh, and we also just happened to have a single 225L 2008 lying in the corner of the cellar, to add a touch of nutty complexity!
All grapes sourced from the same blocks of old low yielding vines – between 25 and 40 years old – in the Stellenbosch / Helderberg area. Keerweder, Post House and Bredell. Decomposed granite soils with good moisture retention, unirrigated or lightly irrigated at varaison.
Yields between 3 & 7 tons /hectare.
Grapes lightly crushed and allowed 3 hours skin contact before gently pressing in a traditional basket press. Sulphur added and natural settling allowed for 2 days before 100 % barrel fermentation with natural yeasts. Time in casks (225L and 700L) 7 to 43 months. Lightly fined with bentonite – a natural clay. 20% new French oak used. Partial malolactic fermentation.
Bottled unfiltered on the property by hand.
Bottling date: 5 / 10 / 11. (220 x 12 x 750ml)
An appealing pale yellow colour. The nose shows dried apricots, honey, nuts and damp hay with some spicy oak. Shows wonderful nutty richness without losing fruit core, developing with great interest in the glass. More Rhone Valley than Loire with thick appealing texture. A long, clean, dry finish.
Probably best on release, but should last several years without developing much.
Versatile food wine – excellent with rich fish and seafood dishes, as well as most subtle white meats or simply on its own.
ALC. 14.68% SUGAR: 4.9g/l TA: 5.5g pH: 3.59 VA: 0.88g/l SO2: 26free & 96total