Month: February 2021

Hitting the Red Zone

Hitting the Red Zone!

As they say, into the final stretch we go. Most of the white grapes are in the cellar, just waiting for Chardonnay from Elgin Valley for Bizoe Idioglossia Chardonnay. It is one of those years with the perfect growing season and balanced wines to be made.

 Hitting the final stretch, we are getting all kinds of red cultivars coming into the cellar. Expect to be harvesting Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon during the week at Croydon Vineyards.

The grapes at this stage have beautiful concentration. 2021 will be a vintages you can pack away for a few years, low pH and balanced natural acidity in the grapes.

Bizoe Estalet 2016Until this week there hasn’t been extreme heat waves around. The perfect day temperature and cool nights for the grapes to ripen in.

Red grapes increase your time in the cellar, attending more pump overs and punch downs. Pump overs/punch downs is the process we use in the cellar to circulate the juice over the skin of the grapes. This process helps to extract colour and flavours out of the skin of the grape. In simple terms the skin of the grapes are the tea bag of the wine. Our job as the winemaker is to manage the process and make sure to create the perfect extraction for generations to enjoy your master piece.

I am sure 2021 great wines will make you forget all the strange and difficult times we lived in when we are starting to drink these wines in 2023.

2 February 1659 – 2 February 2021

2 February 1659 – 2 February 2021

It feels like quite a significant date in 2021. 2 February 1659 was the first grapes picked by Jan van Riebeeck to produce South Africa first wines. 2 February 2021 our first grapes arrived for the 2021 harvest and also the first day of the year we can sell our wines locally. Is it coincidence or is there a message?

Rikus and Elton in the cellar before harvest

Rikus Neethling and Elton Minnies

Not that I believe in conspiracy stories it was just one of those facts that I picked up when I was over joyed to be able to share our wines again with the South African public. We as a wine industry also needs to lift our caps to our export body Wines of South Africa for the amazing work they did by promoting brand SA across the world. Although 2020 was a tough year our exports as a country grew. In the last few months we have exported to our partners in Singapore, United Kingdom, Switzerland and Finland.

With the reopening of the South African trade there was a flurry of deliveries going out last week. New orders from retail stores, restaurants is giving us hope that the industry can recover. 

Harvest started in a hurry on the 2nd of Feb with Sauvignon blanc from Croydon Vineyards. Early signs that we are going to have great quality wines from the 2021 harvest. The balance between concentration sugar, natural acidity, taste of the grapes is looking promising and looking forward to drinking some of the wine later in the year in the case of whites and rosé. 

Thanks for the support during these times, keep on drinking South African Wines and supporting this beautiful industry. We will keep the Proudly South African Flag flying in the winery.

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