(Cabernet Sauvignon 85%, Cabernet Franc 7%, Merlot 6% & Malbec 2%) Limited release Philosophie, is a brave endeavour in which we attempt to marry the mind, the heart and the soil as we celebrate the diversity of Vondeling. THE STORY BEHIND THE LABEL Each year a celebrated artist is recruited to illustrate a rare Paardeberg flower in the medium of their choice. This unique rendition is placed on a numbered selection of Vondeling’s finest bottles to create a series of collectable and rare wine. This year, we’ve chosen the rare and endangered, Pauridia Capensis, commonly known as The Peacock Flower or Star of Winter, to be our flagbearer. This brave and vibrant bloom, beautifully illustrated by Edwina Ellis, is an apt choice for such a bold vintage. VINEYARDS In a handful of specific vineyards, we explore the absolute limits of quality with no consideration to cost. Once again, a small vineyard of ultra-low-yielding Cabernet Sauvignon, takes centre stage and is handsomely supported by fellow Bordeaux companions, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec. Each vineyard is carefully assessed at the end of the growing season and attentively pruned during the winter months. At bud burst, any shoots which develop poorly are immediately removed. This ensures that the remaining shoots have plenty of energy to grow sturdy, fertile flowers and facilitate uniform berry set. As the grapes develop only one bunch per cane is selected and the rest are dropped to the ground. This lowers the load on the vine, thereby removing any stress in the plant and allowing perfect flavour and tannin development. It also diminishes any need for irrigation and helps preserves the grape’s natural acidity. VINIFICATION Once deemed to have reached optimal ripeness the grapes are hand-picked and refrigerated for 24hrs. The bunches are carefully destemmed, and the berries individually sorted to remove any green material. The intact berries are then ferried, via conveyor belt, to open top fermenters for cold soaking. Cold soaking is done at 6 degrees Celsius for a period of 5 days. Cold soaking is a process which promotes partial degradation of the grape cell wall, to allow the gentle extraction of fruit flavours and aromatics located just below the surface of the skin. Subtle tannin extraction protects these delicate flavours and promotes colour stability. As the berries slowly come to room temperature, ambient yeast populations commence a spontaneous fermentation. This natural fermentation, by multiple wild yeast strains, is preferable, as it will ensure that the wine has complexity and character. A cool fermentation temperature slows the rate of fermentation and affords the winemaker adequate time to assess and manipulate the character of the wine, thus unlocking its full potential. The method of extraction is by regular, manual punch down and the wine is basket pressed after two weeks of maceration on the skins. From the press the wine moves directly to new 300L French Oak barrels for malolactic fermentation. This slow bacterial degradation of the wine’s harsher acidity has the welcome side effect of meshing the oak and natural fruit flavours together in a seamless package. The wine remains on its yeast and malolactic lees for 14 months before the best 10 barrels are selected, blended and returned for an additional 8 months of maturation. Of these 10 barrels only 5 are selected for the final blend. The wine is bottled after 3 months in tank and bottle matured for at least two years before release. TASTING NOTES & CELLARING & FOOD PAIRING A deep, dark, vibrant red colour. A complex and sensuous nose of dark chocolate, black cherry, raspberry and sundried tomato. Beautifully infused with aromatic truffle, vanilla pod and subtle graphite undertones. The palate is dense and bold yet shows some lovely classic restraint. Ripe plum and lilted cassis lead with underlying layers of cured tobacco leaf, salted olives and expressive, broad tannin. Accolades Platter’s Guide 2018 4,5 Stars Tim Atkin 93 Points Analysis pH 3.55 Total Acidity 6.0 g/l Residual Sugar 4.4 g/l Alcohol 14.3 % Download Tasting Sheet
VINEYARDS Made primarily from cold pressed Merlot, the anchor vineyard for this delicious wine is now 20yrs old. Located on a granite spur in the foothills of the Paardeberg Mountain, the berries are well exposed to sunlight. Exposure to sunlight is essential to eliminate green flavours from the fruit. The soil has a high clay percentage, and this lends softness and volume to the wine. Great care is taken to ensure that the vines do not bear too great a crop or suffer from drought. This is done through green cropping of the vines and micro irrigation. Both practices help to preserve the natural acidity, freshness and vibrancy of the grape aromas. VINIFICATION Grapes are picked at optimum ripeness in the early hours of the morning before being destemmed and chilled before pressing. This short route, from vine to press, ensures minimal degradation of the fruit aromas and a very moderate extraction of colour. All free run juice is kept separate from the “colour fraction” to ensure a deliciously subtle salmon colour. The juice is cold settled to remove any coarseness and fermentation is done in stainless steel tanks. The wine is 100% unoaked. A six-month period of maturation on the yeast lees promotes richness and complexity. TASTING NOTES & CELLARING & FOOD PAIRING The wine has a delightful and delicate, salmon pink colour. It displays a bright bouquet of Turkish delight, raspberry coulis, passion fruit and litchi. The palate is well rounded but refreshingly vibrant, packed with red berry flavours, seductive floral undertones and a pleasant citrus twist. Pair with spicy Thai prawns, grilled Portuguese sardines or a fresh tomato, feta and pomegranate salad. Accolades 2020 Rose Rocks - Gold 2020 Vitis Vinifera Awards - Gold Analysis pH 3.5 Total Acidity 5.5 g/l Residual Sugar 3.1 g/l Alcohol 12.5 % Download Tasting Sheet
Out of stock(100% Chardonnay) VINEYARDS Vondeling Rurale Blanc de Blanc makes use of Chardonnay grapes from a single block, located on a south-west facing slope on the decomposed granite soils of the Paardeberg Mountain. Unlike Mèthode Cap Classique, the grapes are harvested with a potential alcohol of 11%, which allows greater fruit expression in the wine, without compromising on vibrancy and freshness. VINIFICATION Natural fermentation begins in a stainless-steel tank and when only a small, but critical amount of sugar remains, the fermenting wine is bottled and capped. Bottling must take place at the precise moment when there is enough remaining sugar to create a healthy, vibrant mousse, but not so much as to cause the bottles to explode. This single, continuous fermentation, using fruit which is approximately three weeks riper than the base wine used to make Mèthode Cap Classique, is what makes Mèthode Ancestrale unique. The wine is matured on its lees for 28 months before being disgorged. Autolysis of the yeast cells creates further richness and adds palate weight and creaminess in the wine. After being hand riddled over a one-month period, it is disgorged and topped using our flagship wooded white blend Babiana from the 2013 vintage, as an alternative to liqueur d’expedition The name Rurale is the original name for what was later recognized by the French A.O.C as Mèthode Ancestrale. We love the implication that this is an uncomplicated, yet pure expression of both the grape and its origins. Rurale is the first Mèthode Ancestrale in SA to be certified by SAWIS and Vondeling was instrumental in drafting its technical description in order for this new category to be recognised. It is a highly labour-intensive way to produce sparkling wine, and for this reason, only 1200 bottles were produced. All grapes are grown and vinified at Vondeling. TASTING NOTES & CELLARING & FOOD PAIRING The wine displays a pale straw colour typical of bubbly that has enjoyed the benefits of extended lees maturation. Tiny, pearl-string bubbles and fine mousse abound. Beautiful aromas of lavender honey, lime, crisp apple with freshly baked pastry and toasted almonds on the nose. The palate is bright and zippy with vibrant acidity and a soft, creamy mouthfeel. Fresh apple appears again along with pears, confected lemon and a long, rich, lingering after taste. Rurale can be paired with smoked salmon, fennel roasted trout or fresh oysters with a squeeze of lemon, salt and pepper. Accolades: SA Sparkling Wine Championships – Double Gold Platter Wine Guide 2020 – 4,5 stars Tim Atkin 90 Points Analysis: pH 3.22 Total Acidity 9.5 g/l Residual Sugar 26.0 g/l Alcohol 11 % Download Tasting Sheet
The grapes used to make this wine come from two adjacent old vineyards planted in 1981 and 1984 respectively. For obvious reasons the one vineyard is simply called the Spice Block and the other the Long Block. Yields are rarely above 7t/ha and therefore naturally produce wines of structure and superior concentration. Our soils consist primarily of deep, well-weathered granite with moderate amounts of clay and iron. Such soils elevate the aromatics and promote finesse in the wine.
VINIFICATIONGrapes are picked in the cool, early hours of the morning then packed into a cold room for further cooling. Once the grapes are below 10°C they are gently destemmed, crushed and pressed speedily to tank. During this process, the sensitive Sauvignon Blanc juice is protected from oxidative degradation, through the judicious application of dry ice pellets. These pellets form an “insulation blanket” of carbon dioxide gas above the juice. The initial, free-run juice and press juice are managed separately, according to their character. The juice is cold settled for 48 hours before it is racked from its sediments and inoculated with pure yeast cultures. Cold fermentation at 13°C locks in freshness and ensures an intense tropical fruit bouquet. After fermentation, the wine is kept on the gross lees for 4 months. This practice adds weight and texture to the palate.
TASTING NOTES & CELLARING & FOOD PAIRING
The wine has a delicate, pale straw colour with a slight green edge. It displays an aromatic kaleidoscope, rich with perfumed peach blossom, white pear, passion fruit and lime. These wonderful aromas prevail on the palate with added guava, pineapple, potpourri and a hint of nettle. The roundness of the palate is perfectly balanced by a steely mineral zest and enjoyable long finish. Enjoy chilled with fresh sourdough bread and soft cheeses or lime drizzled game fish.
Accolades2020 Gilbert & Gaillard International Challenge - Gold
AnalysispH 3.57 Total Acidity 5.4 g/l Residual Sugar 3.3 g/l Alcohol 13.4 % Download Tasting Sheet
(100% Muscat de Frontignan) VINEYARDS This wine is made from a single vineyard of Muscat d’Frontignan. The winemaking begins in the vineyard. When the acidity and sugar are in perfect harmony, the stem of each bunch is individually crimped to isolate the bunch from the vine. The crimping process stops the supply of water to the bunch, causing the berries to desiccate on the vine. Crimping is done before the grapes are 100% ripe and still high in natural acidity. The crimping process concentrates the sugar and the acidity of the berries and takes up to two weeks. The grapes are naturally protected from the sun by the vine canopy and air movement across the berries stops moulds and fungi from forming while they are drying. Finally, the fruit is ready for picking. VINIFICATION The dried grapes are hand-picked and chilled overnight. They are then destemmed, but not crushed, directly to open top fermenters. Here the berries are fermented much like a red wine, with periodic punch downs, to extract all the syrupy juice from inside. This method adds structure to the wine and the light tannins help to preserve fruity freshness. After approximately one week on the skins, they are pressed, and fermentation is completed in tank. Fermentation stops naturally when the combination of high acidity, increasing alcohol and concentrated sugar finally becomes too inhibitory for the yeast. The wine is aged for 11 months on the gross lees before it is bottled. TASTING NOTES & CELLARING & FOOD PAIRING The wine displays a golden to light amber colour. It has a perfumed nose of bright pineapple, ripe apricot, honeyed marmalade and seductive rose petal. These heady aromas are supported by orange blossom, jasmine and wild rosemary. The nose carries through to the taste, where the mouth-watering sweetness is cut by a tangy acidity, which ensures a persistent and refreshing finish. This is a naturally fermented and unfortified wine, and allows for many delightful treats, which may incl. savoury duck liver pate, sweet spice-laced puddings and traditional soft cheeses. Serve chilled and don’t wait for dessert. Accolades 2020 Platter’s Guide – 4.5 Stars 2018 James Suckling SA Report 90 points Analysis pH 3.43 Total Acidity 6.1 g/l Residual Sugar 203.9 g/l Alcohol 10.5 % Download Tasting Sheet