The grapes to produce Pinotage Constantia Groot Constantia were harvested in at 26° Balling and fermented on their skins, imparting colour, flavour and fine tannins, until the wine was dry. During fermentation four pump-overs per day took place to encourage maximum extraction. Pinotage Constantia Groot Constantia then spent 12 months in French oak barrels, of which 40% was new oak, with 20% in second, 20% in third and 20% in fourth fill barrels.
The vineyards are located on the steep valley on the eastern side of Table Mountain. The grapes for this wine were grown in various blocks that range from 39 metres to 160 metres above sea level. All the slopes are south to south east facing. The climate is Mediterranean with cooling breezes from the Atlantic Ocean encouraging balance and complexity in the grapes. The average rainfall is approximately 1,100mm per annum, which nourishes the predominantly Cartref and Glenrosa soila gravelly soil with low fertility. The climate, combined with the cool southern slopes and deep mountain soils provide the ideal setting for the making of this top quality wine.
Groot Constantia is South Africa’s oldest estate and one of South Africa’s most visited tourist attractions. In 1685 Cape Governor Simon van der Stel built a farm in the foothills of Table Mountain, which he named Constantia. The winery received world acclaim from Napoleon, Bismarck and King Louis Philippe of France who was the biggest single buyer of Groot Constantia wines. They had to sell to the Cape government after phylloxera ravaged the vineyards. Now, the total estate covers 165 hectares of which 87 hectares are planted, at an altitude of 60 to 280 metres above sea level. The climate is generally cool resulting in complex and balanced wines.
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