Frans K Smit White Blend 2015
This Bordeaux-style white blend offers harmoniously balanced, subtly articulated flavours.
FKS: ‘The Sauvignon Blanc is cultivated on south-east facing slopes in Durbanville, from vines rooted in deep, rich, water-retentive Malmesbury shale. In this dryland situation, the roots strive to absorb every last drop of subterranean moisture and minerality, resulting in a berry with great strength of character. The Sémillon is from an equally gentle home. Steep Helderberg slopes on the cool eastern side of the mountain make this terroir very hospitable to the vine. Being on a steep aspect, the rich Hutton and Clovelly soils catch plenty of run-off from the mountain in winter. Added to this, the grapes in both coastal locations are spared the brutality of the midday summer heat, as coastal air flow keeps things temperate. Full phenolic ripeness and flavour concentration develops unhindered.’
Pale straw yellow colour with nuances of green at the edges. A discernable citrus and lime palate ̶ more tropical than herbaceous ̶ and surprising hints of elderflower. The herbaceousness is more prominent on the nose than on the palate. After decanting, a touch of vanilla rises up through the layers. With aging, this vanilla is likely to fade into the background. While already intriguingly complex, this vintage promises to become increasingly layered over the next 4-5 years.
‘This Bordeaux-style white offers harmoniously balanced, subtly articulated flavours. Soft and refined, it’s round at the edges and has traces of the unexpected ̶ like fig leaves on the nose and the merest hint of elderflower. This complexity of flavours comes from very selective sourcing and attention to detail. The presence of oak is a barely-there sensation, on the nose rather than the palate. This stirs yet more complexity into its wonderful creaminess – a trait I like to call ‘white tannins.’
- Frans K Smit, Cellar Master, Spier
80% Sauvignon Blanc (Durbanville) and 20% Sémillon (Helderberg, Stellenbosch)
In the cool of first light, the grapes were hand-harvested in small lugs and pre-cooled before sorting and crushing began. The Sauvignon Blanc was harvested at optimum ripeness, with pleasing natural acidity and hearty tannins. The Sémillon came off the vine at 22-22.5 Balling, just as acidity peaked. Not a moment sooner ̶ or later. Timing is the thing. Using only free-run juice, allowing 6-8 hours of skin contact on the press, and a long stint on the lees. All contribute to the accomplished flavour profile. And of course, barrel blending to correct percentages, before fermentation begins.
One large, lightly toasted foudre barrel was used for the fermentation – aged on the lees, for 14 months. By the time juice met bottle, it was already beautifully integrated.
Alc: 13.9% TA: 6.1 g/l RS: 2.1 g/l pH: 3.30
Best when paired with fillet of cob or kingklip, with butter and citrus or lemongrass; or whole steamed lobster with butter sauce.Download Tasting Notes Download High Res Packshot Buy Wine