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The Franschhoek Cellar’s harvest began with Sauvignon Blanc from the valley on 22 January. Winemaker JD Rossouw and his team regard the Semillon and Shiraz from Franschhoek vineyards as their flagships. Sourcing from producers in various parts of the Franschhoek Valley and the Coastal region gives them access to some very old plantings to consider for the top of the range while benefiting from many options in putting to-gether their     bargain-priced champions.
Rossouw says that the Franschhoek Cellar’s 2016 harvest was in line with the general trend. “A dry, hot summer. Small crops, small berries. The cooler the climate, the better the quality and yields.” Moreover, he ex-pects the reds to be better than the whites from this vintage. “Less prima-ry fruit.”
Though yields were down in most areas of the Cape Winelands, Franschhoek Cellar sourced more grapes than usual due to market de-mand — Perdeberg and Elgin areas were some of the leading suppliers outside the valley. Times were somewhat tricky and testy when most of this year the crop was characterised by low acidity. “Luckily we can compensate for this,” says Rossouw. Of the reds, he remarks that there was less spiciness, more blackcurrant, softer tannins, and good mouthfeel. Of the whites, he has particularly high hopes for the outcome of Franschhoek Chenin made in a reserve style, and there’s an exciting Semillon from 80-year-old bush vines.

Click here to download the full harvest report


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