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This is our latest addition to the portfolio. We love Methode Ancestral wines and the texture they bring. We wanted this wine to be drier than the “I wish I was a Ninja” as we feel Chenin has more depth when it is drier . The photo was taken by our friend Martin Shambrock in London of his neighbour’s dog “Layla”. We love the photo and think it suits this wine perfectly, it serious but playful at the same time.
NAME OF ESTATE/DOMAINE: TESTALONGA
NAME OF VIGNERON: Craig Hawkins
LOCATION: Bandits Kloof, Eendekuil, Piketberg, Swartland
CLIMATE: Dry Mediterranean
TERROIR: Decomposed Sand stone, flat, 95m above sea level.
Planted in 1961, dry land bush vines (un-trellised), farmed organically. This is a block we started working with in 2017. It is a 4-ha block of Chenin planted on the sandstone soils of the Piketberg foothills on the way to Redelinghuys. It’s our oldest block of Chenin vines on soils that lie adjacent to a river, this provides enough water throughout the growing season. The section of this block used for the wine is a small piece right next to the river that gives more neutral clean fruit flavours which is why we chose this part of the block for the wine.
GRAPE: 100% Chenin
Hand-harvested then fermented in fibreglass tank at a temperature of 8 degrees. It was racked 6 times during fermentation to remove the sediment. At a sugar of 35g/l it was bottled under crown cap where it was left to finish fermentation and build up a natural pressure of carbon dioxide. After 10 months the bottles were riddled and disgorged and topped with the same wine (from other decanted bottles) and crown capped again. No SO2 was ever added to the wine and neither was any settling or fining agent.