Paarl, March 2012: After getting off to a slow start, Fairview is in the final stages of the 2012 harvest. The considerate climate fluctuations leading up to the harvest resulted in a later, slower harvest that looks to yield a well-structured, top quality vintage.

Fairview winemaker, Anthony de Jager says, “This harvest has been unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in all my years as a winemaker. It is interesting to note that the harvest conditions experienced in the Western Cape this year are similar to some European regions which are well known for its slow ripening process and good quality wines.”

De Jager continues to say, “In the lead up to the 2012 harvest, Western Cape vineyards experienced a fairly dry winter, gentle spring, early February heat spike followed by a cool and mild February and March, this all contributed to a long and extended ripening season. The slow ripening process gave the grapes time to evolve, resulting in an interesting and more complex end-product. Instead of rushing to pick the grapes before over-ripening, we could wait for them to reach the perfect ‘sweet spot’ and pick at them at their best.”

Due to these conditions, Fairview’s vineyards produced slightly smaller berries and bunch sizes, producing a wine with beautiful colour and more concentrated fruit flavours. “The wine is looking well structured, with nice tannins. Optimal ripeness was achieved at lower sugar levels which ultimately translate into lower alcohol levels in the wine.”

“Although it is still early days, some of our single vineyard wines are looking fantastic and it seems like we are on a really good vintage. Be sure to keep space in your cellar for the 2012 Jakkalsfontein Shiraz and the Darling Chenin Blanc, as they are the leaders of the 2012 pack,” concludes de Jager.

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