It’s Really All about the Vineyards
Mourvèdre is one of the most underrated red grape wine varietals and it goes by 95 other names, including Mataró, which is used in Portugal.
It is a well-known Rosé varietal used in regions such as Provence and the Rhône valley in France. Our Circumstance Cape Coral Mourvèdre is produced from grapes in the Stellenbosch wine growing region, characterised by relatively mild winters and long, warm summers. The vines are cultivated under dryland conditions and planted in cool, deep red soils which provide adequate water for this late ripening varietal.
A Gentle Hand
Grapes were hand harvested followed by a gentle whole bunch pressing in our new horizontal basket press, to extract only the finest juice. No further maceration of the juice with the skins was allowed. The juice was run down via gravity into tank and left to settle naturally for 12 hours.
From there, we racked the clean juice off to wooden fermenters to start the natural fermentation spontaneously, relying on wild yeasts that occur naturally in the vineyard.
The reason why we ferment in our older wooden fermenters is to ensure a slow ingress of oxygen throughout the process and therefore a longer fermentation without picking-up any oak aromas. The wine was then left on the primary lees to add further complexity before bottling.
And A Few Prayers To Mother Nature – 2017/18 Growing Season
The Cape experienced a very dry growing season from the end of the 2017 harvest and also during the beginning of 2018. The 2017 winter was not exceptionally cold but still colder than the previous three years, which helped to ensure an even budburst. The rainfall was the lowest that we have experienced in the last 10 years on the farm.
Budburst started earlier than usual seeing that the winter was not very cold. We could see some of the first buds appear early in September. From there on the vines were struggling to grow due to the dry condition and veraison only took place in early January. The dam levels were also low and we were only able to irrigate the younger blocks. The best practice during dry conditions is to always have a complete weed-free vineyard to prevent excessive water usage and to limit stress on the vine by suckering if needed- sometimes this also happens naturally.
In early January we did receive rain and also a bit in early February. We believe that this was the saving grace for our vines to help them ripen the fruit more evenly. During this time, we did not see excessive heat spikes and had lovely cool evenings which helped to have a longer growing season and have all the flavours develop over a longer period.
Harvest started about 10 days later than in 2017. We saw a decrease in berry size on some blocks. Fortunately, little to no rot was found on the grapes, which helped to have a stress-free sorting table. Overall, we are more than happy with the quality of the 2018 harvest.
A Tasting Note From The Glass Of Nadia Barnard
A delightfully pale coloured Rosé. Delicate red berry aromas combined with a flinty note are prominent on the nose. The palate is soft with a lingering fresh acidity on the aftertaste. Traditionally the wine is served chilled on its own, but also marries well with spicy, tuna-based sushi.
RS: 1.9 g/l
TA: 4.7 g/l