2008 Pierneef Shiraz Viognier
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This wine is a blend of 89% Shiraz and 11% Viognier. The Shiraz component is from Bot River in the Walker Bay region (63%) and Elim (26%), while the Viognier (11%) originates from Franschhoek.
Predictions by farmers of early fruits, such as peaches, proved to be correct – the season was at least two weeks later than normal. Weather preceding ripening was cool and created the right conditions for an exceptional year, described by some as “European”. Sugar levels raised slowly – a very positive aspect. Timing, however, was complicated by untimely rains and harvesting required painstaking planning. In some areas, threatening rot necessitated earlier harvesting for Shiraz, but, in general, ripening was at lower sugar levels, resulting in elegant wines with lower alcohol levels.
The Viognier was harvested on 12 March and then refrigerated, while the Shiraz was harvested on 13 March. Both varietals were hand-sorted and they were placed in the tank together. The wine was pumped over regularly and was fermented at 25 degrees Celsius. After fermentation the wine was left on the lees for an extended period of approximately two weeks. Malolactic fermentation and maturation were in 225-litre French oak barrels, 63% of which were new. The wine was matured for 15 months and then bottled on 19 November 2009. A total of 4 400 cartons (6 x 750ml) were released.
Alcohol 13,73% vol
Residual sugar 3,1 g/l
Total acid 5,5 g/l