CONSTANTIA GLEN TWO 2015
HARVEST SUMMARY BY WINEMAKER, JUSTIN VAN WYK
The 2015 vintage was an outstanding one for Constantia Glen with textbook ripening conditions. The season began nearly two weeks earlier than in 2014 with the picking of our first Sauvignon Blanc grapes inaugurating harvest on 16 February. The summer growth period leading up to the early 2015 harvest was cool, but very dry, which combined with early, even, bud-break in spring 2014, led to véraison in our vines beginning earlier this year. The vines were also shaped in slightly smaller canopies, allowing good sunlight penetration and air movement in the bunch zone. This ensured that berries could ripen optimally in a healthy microclimate. The Sauvignon Blanc harvest stretched over 19 days as each different clone achieved its desired ripeness and flavour concentration, and we saw the end of the white grape harvest with the picking of the Sémillon on the 4th of March. The Sémillon component makes up 29% of this focussed blend, and adds a beautiful texture and zesty opulence to the overall palate.
This wine is strikingly clear with an intriguing straw-to-lime green tinge.
Elegant citrus, green fig and floral aromas, with special focus on the delicate notes of elderflower. Beyond these initial aromas you become intrigued by the complex array of tropical aromas of tangerine and green melon, through an uplifting zest of lime. These tropical "youth-like" aromas will further develop and integrate over time to result in a charmingly refined wine.
This year the blend is more serious than ever, but undoubtedly remains the essence of poise and finesse. Its polished weight, brought about by the Sémillon (29%) measure, is beautifully balanced by a fresh natural acidity and clear minerality that lingers well onto your next sip. The wine has a vibrant intensity and remarkable fruit concentration. It is full and rich with a textured mouthfeel that develops from ageing on lees in large 600 litre barrels for 6 months. This blend will further develop in the bottle and age admirably for another 8 to 10 years from the date of harvest.
Alcohol: 14.0% Titratable Acidity: 6.3 g/L
Residual sugar: 1.7 g/L VA: 0.5 g/L
The grapes used to make this wooded Bordeaux-style white wine are specially selected from the best vineyards grown on the farm and these grapes are handpicked, pressed and the juice is fermented in large 600 litre barrels. This year marked our first trial in adding small components of whole-bunch pressed Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc to the blend, and the results were outstanding. These portions highlighted the more elegant, floral aromas that are evident on the nose and offer additional structure and freshness. The wine was matured on the lees in 600 litre French oak barrels, of which 29% were new, for 6 months. The rest of the barrels were older oak ranging from 2nd to 6th fill. Careful barrel selection resulted in a wine showing incredible concentration of fruit and only a small influence of oak. The final blend consists of 29% Sémillon, responsible for the full-bodied nature and ageability of this wine, whilst the 71% Sauvignon Blanc brings about a graceful vibrancy and fresh acidity to balance the wine’s waxy weight.