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The ancient art of desiccation in award winning Shiraz

14th June 2013 Print

Ancient Greek winemakers perfected the art of desiccation, or quite simply, strangulation of the vine. The stalks are clamped on the vine before harvest, thus blocking the channels carrying various components to and from the berries. While up to 40% of the water evaporates, the natural acids and grape sugars are retained, concentrating flavours and colour.

The almost forgotten, labour intensive winemaking process that seemed ideally suited to climatic conditions in the Franschhoek valley, was revived by Solms-Delta as a means of creating a specific signature for some of their premium wines and this decision has proved to be an inspired one.

Since the first vintage was released in 2004, the Solms-Delta desiccated wines, both white and red, have received wide acclaim, with particular plaudits for Africana Shiraz:

Tom Stevenson, 'Wine Report 2008′

Ranked 1st among the SA region's '10 Most Exciting or Unusual Finds' and 22nd among the world's '100 Most Exciting Wine Finds' of the year -

Tim James, '1001 Wines You Must Try Before You Die' (2008)

Platter Ratings - previous vintages consistently rated 4.5 stars

Solms-Delta Africana 2011 is the latest release. A single varietal Shiraz desiccated on the vine. A dark and concentrated wine nuanced with liquorice, black cherries and cassis fruit. The firm tannin on the palate is balanced by a fine acid and full body that gives the wine an elegant finish.

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