Having sold their successful IT business in London, Brian and Marion Smith searched wine regions to realise their dream to make outstanding, small quantity wines, eventually settling on the unique terroir of the Elgin Valley in South Africa. Certified organic and using many biodynamic practices, ploughing is done by Maddox, a gentle Percheron horse, and pest control is handled by ducks patrolling the vineyards.
Elgin Ridge 282 Chardonnay 2018
This Chardonnay starts off with fresh and linear lime tension and opens up to sweet satsuma and candied citrus. The pithy texture keeps the sweet citrus fruits tightly knit at first. With more oxygen entering the wine in your glass, the pithy texture opens up to a velvet-like mouthfeel and leaves you with a wine that will continue to change in aroma expression as time passes.
The vineyard practices include the production of our own biodynamic compost and use of biodynamic preparations, as well as the daily efforts of our team of hardworking animals – “weed eating” is undertaken by Dorper sheep, snail and insect management is seen to by Peking ducks and chickens, and our herd of miniature Dexter cows keep up a steady supply of enriching manure.
The vines are rooted at 282 metres above sea level, in soils which have been completely untouched by chemicals. With the highest quality grapes, where there is a perfect natural balance, there is less to do in the cellar – which seamlessly complements our winemaking philosophy of “minimal intervention”. This results in more flavour and expression in the glass and creates a natural approach throughout from vine to bottle.