We are delighted to announce the release of The Winery of Good Hope Full Berry Fermentation Pinotage 2019. Pinotage is a notoriously difficult grape, prone to display harsh tannins, stalkiness, bitterness and other less than desirable characteristics. We have been working for the last decade to find ways to work with the vineyards and grapes to bring out the friendlier side of Pinotage. As a crossing of Pinot Noir and Cinsault, it can be produced in a naturally lighter style of wine -though more extractive methods have most often been used, making it instead in the same method of a traditional SA Cabernet Sauvignon. In order to bring our Pinotage back to its true parentage, we have honed our viticulture and winemaking to respect the more refined genealogy of the grape.
We have developed an approach which we are calling Full Berry Fermentation; de-stemming, keeping the berries fully intact, spontaneous, wild fermentation occuring inside the unbroken skins of the berries, with the effect of minimal skin contact, in turn coaxing-out a gentler, more textural nature.
We work with two vineyards for this Pinotage, one based in Northern Stellenbosch and the other in Voor Paardeberg, approaching 20 years old respectively. The former on sandy and very heavily decomposed quartz and granite soils, the latter on weathered, granite derived soils. In 2019, the effects of the preceding 3 year drought in the Western Cape are still evident and have resulted in smaller than usual crop levels. We experienced a fairly cool ripening period in December and January, especially during the evenings, resulting in very even and slow ripening. Cool nights promoted deeper colour and improved phenolic development than in 2018, which was a much more compressed vintage by comparison.
This wine displays a refreshing yet juicy palate with black berries, plums, wild black fruits and a wonderful, natural sucrosité . It has a lithe texture with integrated, supple tannins and some attractive spice on the finish. Incredibly moreish! We’ve been hooked on Pinotage for some time and we are delighted with this one!