The grapes to produce the One Man Band Red Iona are hand harvested/destemmed and hand sorted on a vibrating table. Punch downs to gently extract tannins. Extended maceration following alcoholic fermentation for 7 -14 days. Tasted every day, to assess extraction level + when to press off. Malolactic fermentation in barrel. 12-18 months in French oak (25% new) barrels.
From the 2008 vintage, Iona have decided to produce a red blend that is reflective of the best of the red wines they produce. It is a wine that refects two very different terroirs: the warm, ripe Syrah from Brocha vineyards lower down in the Elgin Valley, and the cool, fresh Cabernet and Merlot from Iona’s vineyards, high up overlooking the Atlantic. The idea behind producing this wine is to produce something that is incomparable and unique to their property.
At 420m above sea-level, set high above the picturesque Elgin Valley Andrew Gunn founded Iona. It is here overlooking the Atlantic ocean that he has secured some of the coolest vineyards in the Cape. In a country where cool climate vineyards are like gold dust, these vineyards are veritable nuggets. There is an extremely long growing season, allowing Andrew to create wines with complex flavours and a fresh, elegant style. The approach is hands off and the land is farmed according to organic and biodynamic practices with a particular focus on ensuring the health of the soils whilst pests are kept under control by the resident flock of geese that roam the vineyards. The vineyards are on a mountain plateau, surrounded by the Kogelberg Nature Reserve, and overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. In a country where cool sites are precious, these vineyards are like gold dust — the grapes ripening up to two months later than other Cape vineyards and in perfect balance. Iona is South Africa’s coolest vineyard site. The vineyards are farmed according to organic and biodynamic practices with a particular focus on ensuring the health of the soils. Natural pest management is provided by the flock of geese that roam the vineyards. Given the lengths that the Gunn’s go through to produce complex, ripe, perfectly healthy grapes, it is unsurprising that the approach in the winery is orientated towards letting those grapes shine. Most ferments are allowed to start naturally and with the exception of the chardonnay (which is in barrel) the wines are made in temperature controlled stainless steel.