The Estate - In the Vineyards
In the Vineyards
We are blessed with a unique terroir here in the central Drakensberg. The area is a summer rainfall area and active growth is from late September To March. In this period we get 934 heat units with a high of some 32°C in January and February. The mountains with its sheer cliffs creates anabatic and catabatic wind flows that sends cool night breeze over the vines.
“…Sometimes new voices have the most spectacular vision. It is uncluttered and organic…”
– Karan Johar
The Vineyards are first growth vines. The oldest vines were planted in 2007 with the latest planted in 2012. 11 Sites have been planted to date and a total of 28.9ha of vine is under cultivation. The following varieties are growing:
Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Sauvignon Blanc
The Season starts with drip Irrigation early September. Early selection of bunches are done with only one bunch per tiller left to grow. This limits production about 7mt/ha. After this the focus is on canopy management above ground and nutrition intake below ground. Clover is planted inter-row to reduce weeds, reduce chemical use and fix nitrogen in the soil. This leaves ground cover and stops erosion. Supplementary irrigation is given as required. Every week every block is inspected and tended to ensure the vines are trellised and secure. From late February we follow the sugar content. The Merlot is the first and we start in the Cellar when the balin count reaches 25. The late season climate has a big influence on the final quality so this is an anxious time for us. Every day is planned on the weather and possible late season rains. The vineyards are empty by the last week of April.