Cap Maritime, Pinot Noir 2020


TA – Tim Atkin MW
PG – Platter’s Wine Guide

The nose is intense and inviting with an array of pure, rich forest fruit, perfume, and subtle whiffs of exotic spice. Aromas of youngberries, mulberries, brambles, morello cherry, rose petals, red liquorice, and smokiness contribute to a wonderfully complex nose. The palate offers concentration and generous flavours of damson, black cherries, espresso, cinnamon, and star anise. The wine is medium-bodied, brooding and richly textured, with seamless, very fine-grained, plush tannins. The midpalate is full and dark, yet silky, vivid and focused, with its smooth, rich berry character and balanced acidity. Black plums, sour cherries and sweet tobacco linger on a fresh, juicy finish with hints of graphite, nutmeg and dark chocolate.

The Hemel-en-Aarde Valley is one of the most exciting places to grow Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in South Africa. Cap Maritime sits perched on top of a ridge separating the Upper Hemel-en-Aarde appellation from the Valley. It is here where we endeavour to create wines that capture the essence of their origin, while at the same time representing a style that we aspire to.

The Pinot Noir vineyards are situated in the Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley appellation and planted on distinctive soils comprising of Table Mountain sandstone and decomposed granite. The 2020 vintage yielded small concentrated berries, adding richness without overtly ripe fruit. The resultant wine displays fresh fruit flavours, concentration and energetic acidity.

Our Pinot Noir was picked and sorted into small lug boxes and transported in refrigerated trucks to our winery in Franschhoek. At the winery, a careful triage (selection process) took place, to ensure that only healthy whole berries were transferred into concrete fermentation tanks. Most of the grapes were destemmed, leaving a whole-cluster component of about 20% with no additions being made. After spontaneous fermentation, we transferred 60% of the juice to Stockinger 2,500L Foudre, and 40% to new French Oak barriques for elevage of up to 14 months, including a prolonged malolactic fermentation under low temperatures.

  • Alcohol: 14.10% vol
  • RS: 1.69 g/l
  • TA: 5.40 g/l
  • pH: 3.60
  • W.O. Upper Hemel-en-Aarde Valley