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Mother Rock


‘Force Celeste’ Sémillon

Swartland - South Africa


All the grapes come from the Waterval Vineyard in the Siebritskloof Valley coming off the Paardeberg Mountain, owned by Barry Schreiber and farmed by his daughter Franziska Wickens. The bush vines were planted in 1997 on decomposed granite and dry farmed since its initial planting. Since 2014, the southwest facing vineyard has only received organic sprayings and the undervine work has been done purely by machine and not chemically. If you think of the Paardeberg Mountain like an outstretched hand, the Siebritskloof Valley is the furthest from the ocean in between the ring and pinkie finger. Diurnal swings here can be about 30 degrees F, which really helps retain acidity and develop aroma precursors.

The grapes were hand-harvested into small lug-boxes, limiting the damage to the grape in larger bins. The grapes were picked early in the morning prior to the sun coming up in order to retain as much acidity as possible and over the period of ten days to get varying ripening levels. The grapes were whole-bunch pressed and the majority of it was fermented in stainless steel at cooler temperature (57°F) with a small amount fermented older 300L barrels. 20% of the entire lot was fermented on its skins. After seven months of aging on the gross lees, the stainless & barrel lots were blended and bottled without fining, filtration or a sulfur dioxide addition.


  • Grapes: 100% Sémillon
  • Vineyard: Waterval Vineyard on the Paardeberg Mountain – farmed by Franziska Wickens
  • Vine Age: 25-years-old
  • Soil Type: Decomposed granitic sand intermixed with fractured clay
  • Viticulture: Practicing Organic – dry-farmed
  • Fermentation: Native – 80% destemmed: 90% stainless steel – 10% in neutral 300L French barriques
  • Skin Contact: 20% - two weeks on skins & stems in older barrels and stainless steel
  • Aging: 7 months in 90% stainless steel and 10% neutral French barrique
  • Alcohol: 12.5%
  • pH: 3.54
  • Total Acidity: 5.2 g/L
  • Total SO2: None added
  • Total Production: 1667 cases

Tasting Note

Hazy yellow. Aromas of fresh grass, tangerine, nectarines and lemon peel notes burst from the glass with subtle notes of cucumber water, honeycomb and orange zest. The palate bring a touch of macadamia nut oil profile with intense texture and grip. There is a good bit of acid initially that dissipates leaving a long, persistent finish. Decanting will do this wine well!

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