We catch up with owner Brian Smith for some harvest 2021 reflections.
Pictured: Brian Smith, vineyard manager Taurai Matunbwa, and Marion Smith
Harvest 2021 – what are your predictions?
Below average yields, but not as low as 2020, due to windy conditions during flowering. Cool season with above average rainfall resulting in small but high quality bunches. Harvest approximately 7 to 10 days later than usual.
Organic fruit looking resplendent on the vine.
What have been the challenges?
Wet and windy weather with the threat of mildew – many of our neighbours have been affected although we have mostly avoided the fungus.
Walking through the jewel box that is a vineyard, watching all that promise of the growing season come to fruition. This is Block 11, semillon, is looking the best it ever has.
Plans for the grapes?
This is the second harvest of our Cabernet Franc and we should increase from only 273 bottles in 2020 to about 600 bottles in 2021. I made most of the vintages including 2016 and I will be returning to making the wine.
Block 12, chardonnay – looking good, we’ll be picking next week
What happens in the cellar when it comes to biodynamics?
All ferments are natural with no added commercial yeast, sugar or acid. In addition we do not use settling or colour extracting enzymes or yeast nutrients. Bentonite, a natural clay, is used to protein stabilise the wine just before bottling.
This time last year… our concrete eggs landed, we’re looking forward to using them all over again for #Harvest2021
Elgin region as a whole – what has the growing season been like and the current harvest?
In general Elgin has been cool and a little wetter than average resulting in reduced yields but still maintaining high quality.
Block 5.1 Pinot Noir – this year looks very special – picking in about 10 days time. Note the bird protection!