In its fourth vintage, this wine is definitely becoming a standard for minimally handled Hemel-en-Aarde Chardonnay for Natasha. The Debos Vineyard is just on the north side of the dam for which it is named at the base of the Babylonstoren Mountains. The small block that makes this wine is a south/southwest facing slope at roughly 550-650 feet in elevation with the vines planted between fields of fynbos and in very close proximity to the sea. Known for its granite soils, the one-hectare Debos Vineyard yields 5.5 tons/hectare on a good year, which 2020 was. The resulting wines are aromatic and elegant, with pure fruit expression.
The grapes were handpicked and then hand sorted at the winery prior to being whole-bunch pressed with an overnight settling to get the chunky stuff naturally filtered out. The following morning the wine was racked and spontaneous fermentation commenced within two days at the ambient cellar temperature in a mixture of concrete tanks and older French 300L oak barrels. Primary fermentation took one month to complete with zero additions, and malolactic fermentation was completed during this time as well. The wine sat on lees with no battonage for an additional 14 months prior to being racked and blended to tank. It was then bottled with a rough filtration and aged in bottle for another four months prior to being released.