Boekenhout is an indigenous Cape Beech tree greatly prized for making fine furniture. The Boekenhoutskloof label features seven chairs; amongst them the country-style split splat chair made in the neo-classical style with a shouldered top rail and thonged seat from the late 18th century. Then there's the Sandveld chair that has two back rails and a thonged seat which made its appearance in the second quarter of the 19th century. The transitional Tulbagh chair was made in the late 18th century, it has a plain back and a shaped top rail with half-round opening. The chairs on our wine label all pay tribute to the skills of the 18th century craftsmen and their achievements in creating beauty from natural sources, just like the pursuit of fine wine-making.
2009 - The year that favoured the winemaker, some would say. This vintage produced the most balanced wines in South Africa for at least the past decade. Semillon inherently doesn’t have high levels of acidity and therefore 2009 provided the perfect conditions for ripening this cultivar. Franschhoek’s first Semillon vineyards were planted in 1902 on the alluvial soils of the Franschhoek riverbed with its high loam content. In 1942 there were more plantings on the sandy sites. These bushvines are planted 1.4m x 1.4m and yields 3.6ton/ha. The skin/pulp ratio of these old bushvines produces wines that are intensely complex, well-structured and have an unbelievable aging potential. The older block was harvested on February 20th with the vineyards on the sandier soils only ripening four days later. The grapes are pressed as whole bunches with the juice settling for 2days. CKS is used for inoculation and the fermentation starts in tank for 2 - 3°B before it is transferred to barrel where it finishes alcoholic fermentation. Before MLF starts,the barrels are topped and stored at 8°C. 100% new French oak is used, but because the maturation is done at such low temperatures, the extracting from the oak is minimal. During these 13 months the wine is never sulphured and no battonage is done.
This wine has creamy white fruit on the nose, with hints of almond, spiced citrus and stonefruit. It shows an appealing freshness with blossoms and the typical minarality from this vineyard. The 2009 Semillon possesses an impressive weight on a rounded palate with its appealing texture and unmistakeable poise. With the lanolin and other tertiary flavours that will develop with bottle age, this wine will be one of the most complex and balanced ever to be produced from these 107 year old vines. The lively natural acidity was enhanced by blending it with 8% of 2010 Sauvignon Blanc from Boekenhoutskloof.
These sandy north-facing slopes were planted with the CS14 and CS163 clones in 1991. In 2009 the Cabernet Sauvignon was picked on 4 different days between March 12th and March 24th. After 5 days of cold maceration the primary fermentation was started with a specific yeast from Anchor, WE 372. Delestage and mainly remontage (depending on the phenolic ripeness of the batch) was done 3 times per day for just under 2 weeks. The temperatures during fermentation are slightly higher than with the Syrah and peaks at 30-31°C. 100% new French oak (Sylvain) is used for the Cabernet Sauvignon seeing that the fruit has structure and depth to support 27 month of maturation in 100% new French oak.
Dense black fruit with complex spice, chalkiness, cedar and Eucalyptus on the nose. Tobacco, mulberry, black olives and dark cherry fills a bold palate with an endless backbone of acidity lined with a core of firm ripe tannins. This is certainly denser, richer and creamier than the elegant 2008 vintage, but classically styled with tremendous balance and perfume. Seductive, polished and refined.
The Boekenhoutskloof Syrah fruit has been sourced from a specific site in Wellington since 1998, because of the unmistakable character that the decomposed granite exhibits. The SH-21 clone was planted on this SEfacing slope in 1993. In 2009 the fruit was harvested over a two week period starting on February 17th. The complexity of this wine also benefits from the diversity in grape maturity from the different picks. The fruit was kept overnight in the cold room before it was sorted and crushed into a concrete fermenter. A small percentage of whole bunches were put into the bottom of the tank of some batches to get a slight effect of carbonic maceration. After 4 days of cold soaking, the fermentation was started by only using native yeasts. The primary fermentation finished within two and a half weeks with the temperature that peaked around 28°C. During the fermentation the wine received delestage 2 – 3 times per day. Pigeage was rarely done on the Syrah. It also received a post-fermentation maceration for another week before being pressed to 2nd filled Saury barrels to undergo MLF. After 18 months in barrel the wine received a light egg-white fining before the final 9 months in oak.
This Syrah has unmistakeable white pepper on the nose, with arguably the most intense floral and mineral notes in the history of this wine. Also hints of cloves and worked leather. The concentrated spicy fruit, especially the black berries and cherries on the nose carries through onto the palate with remarkable freshness, complexity and purity. Textured, composed and seamless in style.