Perfumed with a floral nose of rose petals, black and red cherries, strawberries and underlying spice notes. The palate is textured, succulent and complex, with a long savoury finish. Vibrant acidity and fine grained chalky tannins make this a powerful and exceptional age worthy wine. This is classic, focussed Pinot Noir.
Grapes were hand harvested into small crates and spent overnight in a cold room. Extensive bunch sorting by hand prior to destemming occured. Bunches were destemmed without crushing, with 8% whole bunch for complexity. Grapes were cold soaked for 5-7 days prior to the start of fermentation. Fermentation occurred naturally in open top fermenters. A combination of gentle punchdowns and pumpovers by hand 2 times per day, depending on requirements, were used during fermentation where the temperature peaked at 28°C. The wines were transferred to 500L and 300L French oak barrels where malolactic fermentation took place (25% new wood, the rest 2nd, 3rd and 4th fill). Maturation in oak was for 12 months, on the lees for the full period. After ageing for 12 months in barrel, the wines were racked and blended (44% Kroon, 26% Kloof, 21% Beeskamp, 19% Danie Huis) in stainless steel tank. The wines were clarified naturally for a period of 2 months before bottling.
The 2019 season started with a cold June month, with average rainfall. This was followed by the warmest July on record (3°C warmer than the long-term avg.) with rainfall far below the long-term avg. The warm July led to very early budding, especially on the Chardonnay vineyards, which was followed by a cold August and September (both months about 2°C cooler than the previous year). This led to very uneven budding. Strong winds during end of October and early November also led to long and uneven flowering. The consequences of uneven budding and flowering were reduced crop levels and reduced berry size. December and January were characterised by cool growing conditions, with January being especially cool. The growing season was characterised by dry, cool conditions and smaller yields, which resulted in concentrated fruit, with intense flavour. The season allowed us to pick fruit at optimal ripeness, with low alcohol and pH levels and balanced acidities. The 2019 harvest was one of the earliest we had on Iona.