Iona, Fynbos Chardonnay, Elgin, South Africa, 2020
At 420m above sea-level, set high above the picturesque Elgin Valley Andrew Gunn founded Iona. It is here overlooking the Atlantic ocean that he has secured some of the coolest vineyards in the Cape.
In a country where cool climate vineyards are like gold dust, these vineyards are veritable nuggets. There is an extremely long growing season, allowing Andrew to create wines with complex flavours and a fresh, elegant style. The approach is hands off and the land is farmed according to organic and biodynamic practices with a particular focus on ensuring the health of the soils whilst pests are kept under control by the resident flock of geese that roam the vineyards.
The Fynbos vineyard has well drained soils that are rich in clay with north facing slopes result in a rich, gorgeous, fleshy, generous wine.The grapes were selected form a single north-facing vineyard on the eastern side of the farm with a north-south row direction. Vines were planted in 2003 on predominantly decomposed sandstone with underlying clay.
Grapes were hand-picked and spent overnight in a cold room before being whole bunch pressed. No settling enzymes were used, resulting in juice containing more solids. This wine was 100% wild fermented in a selection of 228L and 300L French oak barrels (25% new, the rest in 2nd, 3rd and 4th fill barrels). The wine remained on the lees for a total of 12 months with no battonage. Thereafter, the wines were racked and blended. The wine was fined and stabilised naturally for a period of 3 months before bottling.
Type: 228l and 300l French Oak
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: 25
The wine is perfumed and mineral notes of soft pear, stone fruit and bright citrus. This is a sumptuous wine whose fruit profile has both depth and breadth, as great structure that allows for significant ageing potential.
Chicken, ham or cheese-based salads such as caesar salad or chicken salads.
6 x 75cl
Award: DWWA 2023 Best in Show 97 Points
Award: Tim Atkin South Africa Special Report 2023 93 Points