We had a chat with our cellar master/winemaker/viticulturist, Magnus Kriel about this year’s harvest season:
What was the total tonnages harvested for 2017?
What was the average tonnages per day?
400 – 600t/day
Percentage red and white grapes?
± 40% red and 60% white
How does this year’s harvest totals compare to those of 2016?
The crop is almost 12% lower than the vintage of 2016, more or less 2000 tons down.
What do you think is the reason for this?
Mostly due to “Black Frost” that we experienced during middle October 2016.
How does the white and red tonnage differ from last year?
Percentage wise it is more or less the same, no significant differences. However the white grapes were more affected by the frost, luckily we had some new plantings coming in.
Did the drought affect Merwida’s harvest?
It was very dry yes, but the days were not as hot as in 2016 so we managed to irrigate all our vineyards right to the end of harvest. Drought played a minor role I would say, although some farms and some blocks were affected more than others where the full irrigation cycle per week was cut into half due to low water levels in certain dams. We could still manage to bring in our crop at desirable sugar levels though.
Merwida had a very good year in 2016 regarding awards. Do you think this year’s harvest is of the same quality, and which wines are standing out for you?
Personally I feel that 2017 is better than 2016. The analysis of the grapes, juice and wine is a big improvement from last year. The early 2017 varietals, like the Sauvignon Blanc and the Chenin Blanc, looks very promising. It is still early days but the reds also looks really nice. It has exceptional colour and the intensity of all the flavours true to varietal character is also outstanding.
What is your overall experience of the 2017 harvest and your predictions for the 2018 harvest?
All and all it was satisfactory enough. The structural upgrades we did in the winery worked really well during the harvest. It was a very quick harvest with the lack of tonnage, but I would say one of the best ones quality wise. I hope that in 2018 the vineyards that were affected by the black frost would recover and be back to normal..
Come Visit us at Merwida the 21st and 22nd of July for our annual Soetes and Soup Festival!
Today reaches the halfway mark with a big 7000 tons! Luckily our winemaking team still enjoys the endless days and long nights by doing what they love!
We are at yet another Weekend! Which means another exciting week of harvest has come to an end! Up to date we have harvested 1445 tons of white grapes and 200 tons of red grapes! We look forward to week 3 with long hours and busy days ahead!
Photo by Tina Hillier
Yip, we are at the end of our first week of harvest and also in February already! Although one week means only a glimpse of the harvest to come, we are glad that the week is over and that we could get back into making new, award-winning wines for all our fans out there. Thus far, we’ve harvested just under 400 tons of grapes – that’s only in 4 days!
Please note that they are busy with the roads in and around Rawsonville, which might mean that you will be stuck in roadworks when visiting Merwida – but don’t worry, we will be here so that you can Stop/Go with delicious wines!
This year’s Soetes & Soup festival was once again a huge success despite the bad weather.
Friday’s furious storm did not seem to bother our guests as they started their festival route just a few minutes after 9am. Throughout the day people gathered in troops inside the cozy lantern lit cellar.
Saturday the weather looked up and our parking started to fill up nicely. With only a few light showers, people started enjoying themselves under our tent and blankets. Inside the cellar guests could taste the marvelous range of Merwida wines while listening to the wonderful sounds of Take Note Music. Here is a small taste of what you missed out on. Our White Muscadel was a big winner and was sold out by Saturday afternoon.
Thanks to all who came out to join us for the Soetes & Soup! A special thanks to all the staff, Bean to Coffee, and Take Note Music. We hope to see you again next year!