We change the label every year to best suit the feeling I think the wine is giving. The photo on the label is of our friend Carlo Lupori who lives and works in London, the photo was taken by his good friend Nico Cafagno who unfortunately passed away. Carlo was discussing with us over dinner one night how time has flown and showed us this photo of him 20 years ago in Italy (the label). We really loved it and thought it would fit well with the Cortez 2019 as time has flown and 2019 is the 10th vintage of this wine. The Cortez vineyard we have been working with the longest and is very special to us, every year it delivers constant tension and quality in the wines it produces.
NAME OF ESTATE/DOMAINE: TESTALONGA
NAME OF VIGNERON: Craig & Carla Hawkins
CELLAR LOCATION Bandits Kloof, Eendekuil, Piketberg, Swartland
TERROIR: Decomposed Granite, North facing, 200m above sea level, from the Paardeberg.
VITICULTURE: Planted in 1972, dryland bush vine (un-trellised), farmed organically. The vineyard is a special one as it has been farmed organically since 2001 and every year, good or bad, gives a tension we sometimes don’t find in our other wines (as much). This I think is due to the high percentage of quartz/silica in the soil.
GRAPE: 100% Chenin Blanc
Hand harvested and whole bunch pressed. Fermented/Aged in 4 x 500L old French Foudre and a single 1500L stainless steel tank for 6 months then blended together and placed back into wood and stainless steel. No yeast (or other) inoculation or additives apart from a small amount of SO2 shortly before bottling. Ambient fermentation (the juice/ wine is not cooled). 100% malolactic fermentation. A clarifying filtration was done, not fined. We do feel this is one of the better vintages of Cortez we have produced.