With March coming to a close we celebrate how far we have come and how few blocks we still need to process before we turn off the crushers. 2018 has not been the biggest harvest to date, but nevertheless, it certainly had its challenges.
With analysis being highly dependent on region and position of the vineyards, we have seen excellent acids on most of the wines, but some warmer areas had definitely experienced a decrease in TA (total acid). From almost all regions we saw a reduction in berry size and weight, thus giving way for a higher skin to juice ratio and more concentration within the juice (and concentrated juice is fermented into concentrated wine – which we are always happy to report on). Yields did experience slight drops, especially with the warmer climate Sauvignon Blancs and Chardonnays, but this was to be expected with the gruelling season of viticultural limitations (think “Mad Max” but for grapes).
So, as we are winding down, we can now clearly start to see patterns in ripening from our (almost done) harvest report, be it for MCC, white or red grapes. As we did not receive any severe heat waves in mid to late February, the ripening periods and intake of grapes (varying in cultivar and origin) happened less simultaneous than previous years. This allowed us to continue grape intakes at a moderate pace. Never were we buried beneath a grape-mountain, with the only way out being continuous full-pressings (which we had) or blending tanks to make space (which we also did and continue to do).
Our cellar’s apatite has almost been satisfied; we are at the stage of the meal where we’re finger-licking and crumb-picking. Our dessert? Something sweet from Cape Town and Elgin, Vin’d Or – or if you enjoy the goodness that Noble late provides – Vin d’MORE.