De Trafford Vin De Paille 1998
The second vintage to be released under the entirely new category “Wine from naturally dried grapes”, recently formed by the Wine and Spirit Board specifically to accommodate this wine and others to follow.
1 block 25 year old vines on neighbouring cool high altitude SW slope. Unirrigated. Yield 6 tons / hect. 2nd block 11 year old vines. Montpellier clone on 101 – 14 rootstock. Lower Helderberg slopes. Lightly irrigated to relieve stress. Yield 8 tons / hect.
Harvest date: 2 / 2 / 98 – 23 / 2 / 98 @ 22.5 – 24.8° balling.
The warm, dry conditions produced a small crop of excellent quality. These conditions continued during the drying process producing very sweet, concentrated grapes.
The grapes were picked at optimum ripeness ( approx. 25 deg. balling ) and laid out on drying racks in 80% shade for 3 weeks. This allows the grapes to concentrate sugars, acids and flavours, before reharvesting in the cool mornings.
Matured for one year using 3 French and 2 American new 225 l oak barrels.
Racked while in barrel to remove heavy sediment and lightly bentonite fined before bottling unfiltered.
Bottling date : 8 / 6 / 99.
Attractive deep yellow colour. Intense honey, apricot, nuts and citrus nose.
The palate is incredibly concentrated with a welcome dryness from the acidity and oak tannins. Long, lingering finish.
This wine is a dessert all on its own – a real treat after the meal. Delicious with biscotti and various nuts. Try with carrot cake on a wintery afternoon. Compliments foeie-gras and good pate’s beautifully.
In parts of France it is traditionally the first drink to have after giving birth !
Alc.11.69 Sug. 221.5 TA 8.2 pH 3.79 VA 1.8 SO2 40/234