Pondokrug – a ridge (rug) deriving its name from a shepherds hut (Pondok).
High up on the West facing slopes of the Stellenbosch Mountain, this is a 1.8Ha parcel of Cabernet Franc planted in 2006. At an elevation of 380m above sea level and surrounded by mountain ‘fynbos’, this block is exposed to many natural elements resulting in very low yields. The soil on Pondokrug is red granitic loam with a high clay content which sustains the vines during the summer months. These factors allow us to produce an intense wine with unique flavours and a solid tannin structure.
All grapes used in producing our wines are grown on Keermont Vineyards. Small parcels of grapes are specifically selected according to ripeness, harvested by hand and vinified separately. This process is carried out gently and naturally in open top fermenters using traditional methods only. This wine spent 20 months maturing in seasoned French oak barrels before being bottled by hand without filtration. Only 1464 bottles were produced.
This wine has a pink purple hue. Typical herbal aromas are complimented by strawberries and red candy. The palate is intense with bright red fruit flavours complimented by hints of sherbet, red peppers and black currant. The tannin structure is tight and grippy and a strong central acid core gives the wine a long powerful dry finish. Drink 2018-2030.
A cold wet winter (as experienced in this vintage) is a good thing for the vine. It goes into full dormancy and wakes up well rested and ready for the season ahead.
This was apparent with very even budding and strong early growth during spring. From that point onwards, we experienced a very dry season. Growing conditions, however, were ideal with warm days and cool nights.
This variation in temperature leads to good flavour and colour development in the berries and as a result we had a small crop with great quality.
We had our earliest harvest yet starting on 23 January and finishing on 3 March and took 70 tons of grapes into the winery. Yield 2015: 2.7 ton/Ha
Alc: 14.5 %
TA: 5.7 g/L
RS: 1.5 g/L
TSO2: 55 mg/L
VA: 0.82 g/L
PONDOKRUG CAB FRANC 15: 96pts TIM ATKIN (MW)
PONDOKRUG CAB FRANC 15: 4 ½ star PLATTER GUIDE
PONDOKRUG CAB FRANC 15: 90 pts NEAL MARTIN
PONDOKRUG CAB FRANC 14: 92 pts NEAL MARTIN (Wine Advocate)
PONDOKRUG CAB FRANC 14: 94 pts TIM ATKIN (MW)
PONDOKRUG CAB FRANC 14: 4 stars PLATTER GUIDE