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de Trafford Merlot
2007 Merlot


Vineyard: 1st block on low lying Helderberg mountain site, 2nd block ‘Mont Fleur’ vineyard – high altitude mountain slope and 3rd block “Keermont” vineyard – high altitude mountain slope.
Soil Type: Poor gravelly clay soil, deep red Hutton and deep gravelly Hutton.
Vine Age: 1 block 19 year old vines, 2nd block 13 year old and 3rd block 17 year old vines.
Irrigation: Drip Method
Harvest Date: 2nd to 29th of March 2007.
Yield: 3, 6 & 3 t/ha.


Typical cold, wet winter followed by a normal growing season with enough rain and warm weather to produce good, balanced growth. The knife-edge harvest conditions with small heat waves alternating with short, wet, cold spells seemed to bring out a nutty character in the Merlot and accentuate the natural structure of the wine in quite an elegant way.
Handpicking into 20 kg lugboxes. Destemming and gentle crushing directly into small 2 ton open top fermentation tanks. Spontaneous natural yeast fermentation at max. 30°C with the cap of skins punched down manually 1-3 times a day for 10 to14 days. Wine drained directly to barrels together with single pressing from traditional basket press.
de Trafford red wines undergo malolactic fermentation in the barrel. 35% new French oak was used from high quality coopers. Time in barrel 19 months, which included several rackings to gradually clarify the wine and assist maturation. The wine was bottled unfiltered by hand on the property.
Bottling date : 13 / 11 / 08. Production : 460 x 12 x 750ml

Tasting Notes:

Color: Attractive bright red color.
Nose: Rich red berry and cherry fruit with intriguing earthiness, nuts and spices.
Palate: These flavors follow through on the palate with lovely fine dry tannins and a classic long, finish.
Other: Probably best between 2010 and 2015. Ideal with baked pasta (such as cannelloni) and various light red meat dishes such as veal, lamb and pork.

Chemical Analysis:

Alc (%): 14.83
RS (g/l): 1.8
TA (g/l): 5.4
pH: 3.55