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Craven

2020

Cinsaut

Stellenbosch - South Africa

About

Mick & Jeanine are thankful to continue with this vineyard they have worked with since 2017 called ‘Rustenhof.’ This great farm in the Faure area has an abundance of lovely Cinsault, amongst many other varieties and Pieter Bredell, with Jeanine’s assistance and direction, farms it with great care. The block the Cravens use is a dryland, bush-vine block, only three miles from the ocean and essentially planted on granitic sand, suiting their winemaking style nicely. Mick emphasizes the massive difference in this vineyard since the 2017 vintage as the Cravens along with Pieter’s son, Bernhard, have been farming it organically and getting as much nutrient matter into the vineyard with use of winter cover crops and chicken manure.

The 2020 wine is a brilliant result of the hard work put into the vineyard. Keeping in line with previous releases and straying from the other reds the Cravens make, the Cinsault grapes are destemmed before fermentation due to the natural low acidity and high pH compared to Pinot Noir and Syrah. Whole-bunch fermentation tends to push the potassium and raise the pH making a soapy style Cinsault. Gentle pumpovers and light punch downs are performed 1- 2 times a day throughout fermentation, and the wine is pressed to 500L barrels for maturation. It is bottled slightly earlier than their other red wines in an effort to express the fresher, brighter characters of Cinsault. The wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered, and with a small hit of sulfur at bottling.

Stats

  • Grapes: 100% Cinsaut
  • Vineyard: Rustenhof Vineyard - grown by Pieter Bredell
  • Vine Age: 32-years-old
  • Soil Type: Granitic sand
  • Viticulture: Practicing Organic
  • Fermentation: Native – stainless-steel (100% destemmed, whole-berry)
  • Skin Contact: 12 days
  • Aging: 7 months in neutral 500L French tonneau
  • pH: 3.55
  • Total Acidity: 5.1 g/L
  • Total SO2: 45 ppm
  • Total Production: 1,200 cases

Tasting Note

The wine while shows it’s typical site characteristics of fynbos, herbs and perfume in 2020 it has a savoriness and more dark red fruits than the 2019. It was tough to one-up the 2019, but this release has certainly done that.

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