Bartàs is a small word that packs in a whole lot of meaning. It is French (Occitan) slang for ‘walking/struggling in the bush/vineyard to find your way to the cliff.’ It’s a beautiful metaphor of Paul Jordaan and Pauline Roux’s wine journey, and a nice homage to Pauline’s French heritage. They found their way, struggling along the cliff, and finally jumped to start a new wine adventure. The Chenin Blanc fruit comes from the Rustenhof farm, off a small granite hill called Mount of Sinaï (the mountain of ’thorn bush’ in Hebrew). The block is located on shallow and warm granite soils in the Helderberg, the most southern part of the Stellenbosch region. The hillside is planted from top to bottom with dry farmed Chenin Blanc bushvines, which run along with the contour of the hill. From up there you can see the waves breaking only few kilometers away. The block is facing directly into the predominant south eastern wind direction. Both of these, the wind and the ocean, have a phenomenal cooling effect during the summer months as well as the general growing pattern throughout the year, causing this to be their earliest pick of the season.
The Chenin Blanc fruit comes from vines planted in 1978 and is manually harvested before being brought back to the cellar. It is whole bunch pressed into old oak barrels, and then undergoes spontaneous fermentation. It matures in 500 liter barrels for 12 months, before racked and bottled, without fining or filtering, and with just a small dosage of SO2.