Let’s talk about the style of wine I’m making under the “Richard Kershaw Wines” brand and look at the ingredients and how they will be used.
Richard Kershaw Wines will be made up of two wines in 2012 – a Chardonnay label and a Syrah label (See here for why I chose these grapes). Remember I spoke the other day about Elgin’s unique climate and how this imbues the wine with certain qualities? Well, the wines for these labels will be sourced only from Elgin vineyards.
The building blocks for these wines are many but the main points I have looked for are:
- Appropriate climate,
- Correct soils,
- Noble grape varieties,
- Excellent cloning material,
- Intelligent farming practices,
- Respect for the environment,
- Gently handled fruit,
- Hygienic cellar conditions,
- Natural winemaking
- Judicious use of wood.
I’ve touched on the aspect of climate in a previous post here , so let’s look at the variety of soils. Grapes will be sourced from four parcels or pockets of land in different parts of Elgin for the Chardonnay, and three to four pockets for the Syrah. These pockets are distinctive because of the soil found here, namely:
- deep Bokkeveld shales in three parcels giving structure and concentration of flavours;
- more gravelly and partial granite soils mixed with light, friable clay in three parcels giving elegance, freshness and aromatics;
- one parcel of sand and pebbles (essentially table mountain sandstone) giving delicacy and fruity flavours.
What does this add up to?
I want to use the cooler climate of Elgin to create a Chardonnay with a restrained, mineral style and focussed on elegance with a white, fruit character, some oatmeal and some complexity gained from percipient wood application.
For the Syrah I’m aiming for more iodine, medicinal, black pepper flavours with more freshness and pure black fruit balanced by less alcohol. These reds will display purity, precision, fine tannin, restraint, harmony and finesse of tannin with complex, black fruit.
I’ll keep you posted on how it’s going…