BELLE AMIE MERLOT BLANC DE NOIR 2020
Belle Amie – meaning my beautiful friend – is an elegant, dry style blanc de noir showing excellent poise and finesse.
TERROIR & VITICULTURE
Elgin is the coolest wine growing appellation in South Africa with an average day temperature in summer of 28 °C, making it ideal to cultivate grapes that will produce stellar wines. A combination of two Merlot clones – MO343 and MO348 – and two Shiraz clones – Sh5 and
SH9 – were used to produce this blanc de noir. These vineyards were established on Ridgelands and Blauwkrans in 2004 and 2002 respectively and were planted in Ferrucreek, Tafelberg Shale and Sandstone soil. The vines have low vigour and produces small berries with loads
of flavour and with a particularly good tannin structure. Breaking out of leaves in the bunch zone on the morning sun-side of the vines lends to good sunlight exposure for full fruit and phenolic ripening. The cool climate and gradual, long ripening stage result in high natural organic acidity with ripe and already smooth tannins.
Premium quality Merlot and Shiraz grapes were both harvested early morning at 22.5 °B on the same day. Bunches were hand sorted before being whole bunch pressed. A soft and slow pressing process delivered free run juice with an exceptionally light colour. This is a critical process as our winemaker chooses not to make any colour adjustment afterwards. After settling, the juice is fermented at a slow rate and a low temperature of 11 to 13 °C to produce beautiful, fruity aromas. Once fermentation was completed, the wine was kept on the lees for 2 ½ months before bottling. The final blend comprise 88% Merlot and 12% Shiraz.
The wine displays a very pale salmon colour. Aromas of strawberry, candyfloss, and cranberry with clean and fruit-forward notes abound. Red berries, sherbet, and a racy acidity is detected on the finish. This refreshing and well-integrated wine is ideal to enjoy on a sunny day