The Boekenhoutskloof Semillon has been predominantly sourced from one of the oldest vineyards in South Africa, planted in 1902 on alluvial soils with a high loam content. Grapes are further sourced from two other low yielding parcels also grown within the Franschhoek Valley and planted in 1936 and 1942 on original rootstock and traditional bush vines. Due to even smaller yields than before and the ongoing dry growing conditions, 2017 delivered small-clustered, healthy fruit ? ideal for creating rich wines with concentration and structure.
The deep root system and high skin to pulp ratio of these old vineyards produce intensely complex, well-structured wines with an unbelievable ageing potential. It is important for us to respect the character of these unique sites and we follow a similar philosophy in the cellar. The grapes are whole bunch pressed and spontaneous fermentation takes place in classic barrique and concrete eggs. We mature our Semillon for 14 months at low temperatures without adding sulphur to ensure that we inhibit any malolactic activity. This oxidative approach at low temperatures enables us to enhance the textural elements of our old vine Semillon, creating structure in a wine that can certainly stand the test of time. The slightly riper 2017 vintage year is reflected in the rich texture which we expect to eventually evolve into typical secondary notes, although hints of the classic lanolin, lemon curd and beeswax are already evident in the wine.