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Simonsig Harvest Review

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The 2009 harvest of Simonsig, South Africa, rekindled fond memories of the classic 1966 surf movie, The Endless Summer, as it was a year of near perfect weather conditions with no end to the balmy, sundrenched days which lingered deep into April.

After 11 weeks of harvesting fun and fears, we can happily proclaim that ‘life at Simonsig is indeed a beach’ as we anticipate an exceptional vintage of well-balanced, quality wines that show remarkable flavour, complexity and high acids.

After an exceptionally wet winter the soils were well saturated and throughout the growing season the quintessential Mediterranean climate prevailed. However, it was the idyllic cooler conditions, which lasted from spring until February, that ensured a slower ripening of the early varietals this year. These lower temperatures were especially beneficial to the quality and varietal character of our Sauvignon blanc grapes, lending a balanced natural acidity and terrific concentrated flavours.

This year the first meaningful rainfall only made its appearance at the end of harvest, which allowed the longest possible hang time for the late varieties to reach maturity and refined flavour spectrums. The Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Mourvédre are all varieties which benefited from the longer optimal ripening and already show finesse with soft, smooth tannins and voluptuous, ripe flavours. Well-rounded wines, with good colour and outstanding fruit intensity are expected across Simonsig’s entire red wine portfolio this year.

In addition to superb weather conditions Simonsig also celebrated a disease free year with virtually no sign of mealy bug, the main culprit in spreading leaf roll and other dreaded viral diseases which are shortening the lifespan of our South African vineyards.

This year saw a 9% increase in the harvest from Simonsig’s own vineyards due to new plantings of Chenin blanc, Chardonnay and Gewürztraminer which made a worthy contribution.

Johan Malan
Simonsig Chief Winemaker and Cellar Master

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