de Trafford Chenin Blanc
2004 Chenin Blanc


Vineyard: Cool, high altitude, South Western slope and the second block is on the lower slopes of the Helderberg, 8 km from the cooling influence of the sea.
Soil Type: Deep red Hutton soil with good moisture retention and Gravelly Hutton and Escourt soil.
Vine Age: One block (Keerweder) 32 year old vines, the second blocks ( Post House ) 18 & 20 year old vines.
Irrigation: Lightly irrigated
Harvest Date: From the 11th of February to the 19th of March.
Yield: 3 and 6 tons per hectares.


A late winter which delayed budding by about 2 weeks. Cool spring and early summer but a relatively trouble-free growing season. A single extremely hot day in January caused a lot of sunburn, especially in the Keermont vineyard. This significantly reduced the harvest but had little effect on quality. The delayed harvest gave us rich intense fruit from the earlier ripening Post House vineyard and a more subtle mineral character from the much later Keermont vineyard. The grapes were picked in the cool mornings at 21 - 24º Balling.
Grapes lightly crushed and allowed three hours skin contact before gently pressing in a traditional basket press. Sulphur and dry ice added and natural settling allowed for two days before
100 % barrel fermentation with natural yeasts.
All the wine was kept in 225 ℓ casks for 8 months with lees stirred once to twice a month initially.
25% new oak used, half French, half American. Most barrels did not go through malolactic fermentation.
Bottled unfiltered on the property by hand with only a light bentonite fining.

Tasting Notes:

Color: An appealing pale yellow color.
Nose: The nose shows nutty, creamy oak hiding the rich apricot and honey fruit and a complex mineral character.
Palate: The palate is rich and full bodied. Oak dominating shortly after bottling, should soon evolve to highlight the rich fruit and long aftertaste.
Other: Probably best between 2005 and 2009.
Excellent with sushi, rich fish and seafood dishes, most white meats or on its own.

Chemical Analysis:

Alc (%): 13.85
RS (g/l): 1.6
TA (g/l): 6.2
pH: 3.42
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