Dave and I were invited to the first weekend of the farm’s opening by Charles Fox. We took a drive from our house on the hot Saturday afternoon with Erica Liebenberg who handled the PR for the opening. Charles took us through his cellar and showed us his bottling plant. The farm will do all their own disgorging, corking and labelling and have installed a plant in order to do this. They have a gyro pallet for the riddling and use machines to wash the bottles as they are far more efficient. The equipment has been brought in from France, and no cent has been spared in my opinion. Charles Fox has 3 vintages bottled with the 2010 harvest yielding only 5000 bottles. This year they aim to increase their yield to 20 000 bottles. The bottles are stored in an underground cellar and there is always the possibility that during the second fermentation they will burst due to the high pressure. The MCC is kept under crown cap for 2 years before corking and therefore the first vintage was only released in 2012. Some of the 2010 harvest has been set aside for aging and this will go in to their extra brut bubbly. This reserve wine is being aged in French Oak. Upstairs, next to the tasting room is their barrel room with stainless steel tanks and a laboratory. A hoist is clearly visible which is used to bring the bottles up from the cellar.
The 2010 Cuvee Elgin Brut (R200) is pale in colour and presents with a lemony nose. It has a citrus taste, which lingers on the palate. It is made from 40% Pinor Noir, 40% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Meunier. The 2010 Cuvee Elgin Brut Rosé (R220) is a blend of 95% Pinot Noir and 5% Pinot Meunier and also delivers a citrus taste and is slightly acidic.
Tel: +27 21 300 1067 | 89 Valley Road, Elgin | Tastings hours: Friday 12pm – 5pm, Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday 11am – 4pm
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