Spice Route Harvest report & Newsletter - June 2013

Sunday, 2 June, 2013
Spice Route
As winter slowly creeps in and the exhilaration of harvest is nothing more than a distant memory, the really fun part starts - we get to taste the wines and monitor their progress.
In my experience, these vineyards were exposed to more favourable weather conditions in comparison to last year. As a result, I can already see that this is a very promising vintage.

Although the harvest began ten days later than usual, we managed to finish at more or less the same time as in the past. The late start definitely added more pressure to what is already the busiest time of the year for us, and at one point all the grapes started to ripen at the same time and had to be picked straightaway.

The 2012 winter rainfall was pleasantly consistent, offering ideal intervals, which allowed the grapes to develop at an optimal level. For us, a consistently good rainfall is crucial for our 'dryland' vineyards, allowing a steady yet stagnant supply of water during the growing season, up until harvest.

Apart from a few fairly hot days, with temperatures varying between 25-35 degrees in December and January, we are pleased with the relatively cool summer season we experienced. These weather conditions encourage healthy grape vines and allows for optimal ripeness in the berries.

I rate this vintage right-up there with the best; one can already see the quality on the white wines. At this very early stage the whites are already showing more tropical flavour with good complexity on the palate. It is still too early to make any predictions on the red wines, but what I can say is that I am very happy so far with what I'm seeing in the cellar.

Overall we had an excellent harvest this year and I am very happy with the results. The first wines of the 2013 vintage will be the Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier and Chenin Blanc, which should be bottled in June or July

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