2017 | 2015 | 2014 | ARCHIVE

de Trafford Chenin Blanc
2017 Chenin Blanc


Vineyard: Helderzight and Skipadvlei bush vine vineyards located on the foothills of the Helderberg and the trellised Keermont vineyard.
Soil Type: Helderzight is made of sandy, gravely escourt soil, Skipadvlei is gravely and decomposed granite while Keermont is made of deep red hutton, with good moisture retention.
Vine Age: 33, 35 and 11 years old.
Irrigation: Drip Method
Harvest Date:
Yield: 5, 6 and 9 tons/ha.


An exceptional vintage. After the hot and dry 2016 season and a dry and warm autumn, insufficient build-up of reserves in the vines and possible uneven budbreak were a concern, however winter was wet and cold and the sudden warm weather in spring helped to provide more even budbreak than expected. The growing season was quite dry and mild with moderate to lower vigor and healthy growth, producing a slightly smaller crop than usual with small berries. Ideal cooler weather during harvest time with cool nights and no substantial heatwaves. Some of the Chenin Blanc was picked just before a heavy downpour at the end of January, but the balance enjoyed the moisture relief, and was picked over the following 3 weeks.
An elegant, promising vintage, similar to 2007.
Grapes lightly crushed and allowed about 3 hours skin contact before gently pressing in a traditional basket press. Sulfur added and natural settling allowed for 2 days before. Barrel fermented in 225, 400 and 700 liters oak barrels, fermented using natural yeasts. Aged over 9 months with lees stirred when necessary to complete fermentation. 15 % new oak, no malolactic fermentation, lightly fined with bentonite (natural clay). Bottled unfiltered on the property by hand.

Tasting Notes:

Color: Pale yellow.
Nose: Fresh dusty apricot and ripe melon on the nose at first with lemon, honey and floral notes.
Palate: Soft though elegantly textured and complex palate with a moderately rich mid palate and a long, creamy finish.
Other: Excellent with rich fish, seafood and sushi.
Already showing a lot of complexity - drink now to 2025.

Chemical Analysis:

Alc (%): 13.35
RS (g/l): 2.3
TA (g/l): 4.8
pH: 3.44