Pas De Nom Creative Batch
The creative batch is a wine that gives us the opportunity to explore the vineyards of the greater Western Cape and our winemaker got really wacky with this one!
The 2021 Creative Batch (v2.0) is a blend of Chenin Blanc, Fernao Pires, Roussanne, Verdelho and Viognier, all treated differently to honour each variety’s individual potential as a wine.
Words from our winemaker, Megan:
It all started on Monday 23 March, when President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that South Africa would enter a nationwide lockdown for 21-days with effect from midnight on Thursday 26 March. The President’s announcement came as the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in South Africa increased six-fold in just eight days. For a brief period in time we were not able to continue to harvest, handle, produce, transport and/or ship wine. Whilst what this meant for the South African wine industry during lockdown was still unclear, widespread panic struck.
You see, whilst our “IN CASE OF EMERGENCY, BREAK GLASS” protocols aimed at climate-induced fungal diseases gathered dust, it ended up being our human health and wellbeing under threat this vintage, and that we did not see coming. So, for once, let’s forget about the weather. This wine is about much more than that. I believe that we too often fail to include the human element in our great conversations around terroir. If it wasn’t for human intervention there would be no wine, and our biggest challenge this year was to get the fruit to a cellar at optimal ripeness after months of blood, sweat and tears in the vineyards. It might seem simple enough, but with workforces stripped and cellar space slim to none, I quickly started feeling the vintage slip through my wine-stained fingertips. Then it hit me: I have always been most creative with my back against the wall. And just like that, I took an unexpected turn into a different direction, and the Creative Batch was born – an energetic wine with vibrant citrus and a light chew from the grape-skin tannins.
We first started our journey with the Creative Batch project in turbulent times during the 2020 pandemic-driven prohibition, where v1.0 was born. As with all mediums of expression, such as writing, we believe the first draft is the most important. It requires you to tap into your intuition and create with your heart. From there, it’s all about the art of revision.
The 2021 Creative Batch (v2.0) is a blend of Chenin Blanc, Fernao Pires, Roussanne, Verdelho and Viognier, all treated differently to honour each variety’s individual potential as a wine. Once all the parts finished their different fermentations, they were blended together and allowed to mature on the gross lees for 9 months prior to being bottled.
This wine was only intended for a single vintage, but is back by popular demand and the 2021 has legs. It is bright and lively with concentrated fruit and a pithy finish that demands another dip. True to the vintage; it is notably fresher than the 2020 and will easily outlive its predecessor! The first aromas to leap from the glass are intensely citrusy and give way to delicacies of ginger and clove. The palate is waxy yet grippy with a leesy weight and incredibly fine tannins that perfectly poise a tangy, tropical finish.