Steenberg kicks off 2017 harvest with great "eggsitement"

by Editor on 01 February 2017
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The 2017 harvest has started in all earnest at Steenberg Vineyards with the promise of great things to come from new hatchlings in the cellar.

In addition to welcoming their first Cape Winemakers Guild protégé, Mahalia Kotjane, the Steenberg winemaking team is super “eggsited” about another cellar newbie – Ernie – their very first egg-shaped concrete fermentation tank.

Kotjane who enrolled in the Cape Winemakers Guild Protégé Programme in 2015 and kicked off her mentorship programme at Ernie Els Wines and Hartenberg, will spend her final year at Steenberg Vineyards. Hailing from Vosloorus on Gauteng’s East Rand, Kotjane has embraced winemaking and has her sights set on becoming one of South Africa’s leading winemakers. The opportunity to experiment with the concrete egg and cool climate Constantia wines, is another rung on her ascent towards reaching her goal.

Much like the classic wooden barrel, the South African crafted egg-shaped Eon concrete tank is permeable to air thereby providing the winemaking team with an innovative new approach to fermentation in the cellar.

“The thermodynamics of these concrete eggs essentially assist in the oxygenation and fluidity of the wines, resulting in longer lees contact while protecting the delicate flavour profiles inherent in our cool climate grapes,” says cellarmaster J.D. Pretorius.

The first Steenberg wine to make Ernie’s acquaintance will be the 2017 Rattlesnake Sauvignon Blanc.

“All in all the idea is to build even more on the textural side of our Rattlesnake Sauvignon Blanc and really push the mouthfeel,” adds Pretorius.

While still in the experimental stage, be sure to look out for the 2017 vintage once it is released towards the end of the year.

For more information visit www.steenbergfarm.com or join the conversation on Twitter @SteenbergWines and Facebook at facebook.com/steenbergestate.

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