The grapes for Stompie's 'Elands Rivier' Pinot Noir are sourced from one single vineyard in the Elandskloof Valley, between Franschhoek and Villiersdorp. The vineyard was planted in 2008, with a high density of dry farmed vines. Soils are mostly sandstone with shale and clay and vineyard lies at 760 metres, with south-east facing slopes. As of 2013 only organic farming methods are used.
All grapes were handpicked in the early morning during cooler weather, placed into lug boxes (smaller quantities mean reduced compaction and damage to the fruit) and then moved to cellar. All grapes are fermented 100% whole bunch, crushed, with one punch down daily. The wine ferments at a warm temperature for about 10 days and then spends another 22 days on the skins for tannin integration. The wine spends an additional 11 months on the gross lees in old French oak, after which the wine is blended and bottled without fining or filtering.
Inspired by many travels to New Zealand, California and Burgundy, Johan Meyer, AKA “Stompie”, has been scouting vineyards hoping to produce the best South Africa can offer, giving honor to the world’s most elite varieties: Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
Johan established his namesake winery in 2011, with 2012 seeing the first bottling of these fine wines. Driven by nature and “terroir” the wines show unique flavors and characteristics of the land from which they came.
He loves nature and focuses on the vines and site rather than on winemaking recipes or traditions. He says, "I want to make honest and pure wines showing terroir and the expression off the grape and not the "hand of the winemaker” but rather the hand and the heart of the farmer!"
While none of the vineyards are 'estate' by ownership standards every site is leased on a 15-year contract with first right of refusal and the ability to dictate most viticultural practices. It is very difficult to buy land in Swartland, especially for a small producer. It is a long-term goal to have various sites. In the mean time Johan has planted vines on the family property in the Southern Cape that will be coming online soon!
In short, the wines are simply “natural fermented grape juice."
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