The everything else overriding goal of our vinification is to not only follow the general principles of a certified organic winery, as we are, but to bring, within the framework of this basic requirement, the juice into the bottle in the best possible way, to bring the terroir as reflected by the juice to the highest possible concentration. In our understanding, only this gives us the right as humans to support nature in its expressiveness. Only in this way does it make sense and is it ecologically justifiable to deliver our wines even over great distances to those who can enjoy them and may, at the same time, experience with their senses that special spot of the earth that makes the decisive difference to those good wines coming from other destinations.

The Harvest

In order to achieve this overriding goal, we start with oenological preparations already in the vineyard. In addition to a quite elaborate green harvest, i.e. the pre-selection by reducing the yield when the grapes are still unripe, we sometimes a few days before harvest bend the grape bunches slightly to increase the must concentration. This labour-intensive procedure is followed by up to five harvesting passes for each individual vineyard parcel to find the optimum ripening time, which for us is determined less by the sugar content than by the physiological condition of the stems, seeds and skins.

Before further sorting, the crop is stored in the cellar for one night in a cold room and brought down to temperatures of about 5°C. This prevents a premature onset of fermentation, which in our case, but at a time we are targeting, will exclusively be caused by the wild yeasts essentially adhering to the grapes coming from the vineyard.

The Harvest

In order to achieve this overriding goal, we start with oenological preparations already in the vineyard. In addition to a quite elaborate green harvest, i.e. the pre-selection by reducing the yield when the grapes are still unripe, we sometimes a few days before harvest bend the grape bunches slightly to increase the must concentration. This labour-intensive procedure is followed by up to five harvesting passes for each individual vineyard parcel to find the optimum ripening time, which for us is determined less by the sugar content than by the physiological condition of the stems, seeds and skins.

Before further sorting, the crop is stored in the cellar for one night in a cold room and brought down to temperatures of about 5°C. This prevents a premature onset of fermentation, which in our case, but at a time we are targeting, will exclusively be caused by the wild yeasts essentially adhering to the grapes coming from the vineyard.

The Vinification

During vinification, these yeasts, like the solid berry components, should remain in contact with each other as long and intensively as possible. We also work with fermentation on the skins for white wines, with maceration of up to several months for reds and in parts with enzymatic-anaerobic whole-berry fermentation for both whites and reds.

After the grapes are hand sorted on the sorting table and all unripe and inferior quality berries were removed, we prefer to use small containers, namely such with a capacity of less than 700 liters, in order to be able to optimize selectively. We practice fermentation in open barriques, whose barrel heads delivered loose by the cooperage will later on be inserted by us only for the barrel storage of the fully fermented wines. Or we ferment in egg-shaped PUR tanks, whose materials allow micro-oxidation similar to oak but don’t influence the taste like new oak does, and whose geometry causes a natural continuous mixing of the contents.

The Result

Different from our country’s most common oenological practice, we do not add any tartaric acid to our wines, do not supplement any bought-in tannins. Our terroir provides us with grapes that make it easy for us to do without any flavour-enhancing additives in the cellar, and also to keep the sulphur content at the lowest possible level, far below the applicable legal limits. This succeeds without compromising the naturally high longevity of Springfontein wines, and even allows us to hold them back for quite some time after bottling, similar to Italian Riservas or Iberian Reservas, and not to release them prematurely for sale. The fact that we strictly do not filter, not even our Blanc de Noir, does not harm the ageing process at all. It rather contributes the last bit to the fact that our wines taste like what has actually made them: Mother Earth, Springfontein Station.

The Result

Different from our country’s most common oenological practice, we do not add any tartaric acid to our wines, do not supplement any bought-in tannins. Our terroir provides us with grapes that make it easy for us to do without any flavour-enhancing additives in the cellar, and also to keep the sulphur content at the lowest possible level, far below the applicable legal limits. This succeeds without compromising the naturally high longevity of Springfontein wines, and even allows us to hold them back for quite some time after bottling, similar to Italian Riservas or Iberian Reservas, and not to release them prematurely for sale. The fact that we strictly do not filter, not even our Blanc de Noir, does not harm the ageing process at all. It rather contributes the last bit to the fact that our wines taste like what has actually made them: Mother Earth, Springfontein Station.

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