Cabernet Sauvignon 57%, Cabernet Franc 27% and Merlot 16%.
The 2014 growing season started with a cold and wet winter, the wettest winter on record at the estate. Initial vineyard growth was slow due to late cold fronts in August, followed by cool, wet weather at the beginning of the growing season. Bud break started in late September, two weeks later than the previous season. Cold, wet weather during early spring caused initial slow shoot growth but picked up after the first warm days in October. Flowering and berry set was even as a result of below normal rain in October. A warm but wet November stimulated growth and extensive canopy management was needed to ensure the vines remained balanced.
The 2014 harvest season started two weeks later than normal, but due to a warm February the Cabernet Franc and Merlot were harvested only one week later than normal. Near the end of March the weather cooled down considerably leading to longer hanging time on the Cabernet Sauvignon. Heavy rain during mid March led to some older Cabernet Sauvignon only being harvested mid April – these vineyards did not make the selection for Trilogy
Trilogy comes from the oldest, most established vineyards on Warwick Estate. The Merlot was harvested on 26 February 2014. The grapes were cold soaked for five days followed by a cool fermentation to preserve the upfront fruit characters. Cabernet Franc was harvested the very next day. The cap was punched down for the onset of fermentation after which four pump overs where done tapering down to one at the end of fermentation followed by a week of post maceration to integrate the tannins before a light pressing. The Cabernet Franc’s, upfront perfume and spice was unforgettable from a very young age. Cabernet Sauvignon was the last wine to enter the cellar, between 13 March and 19 March just before the early winter heavy rains. The berries were notably thick skinned and small. After sorting, the grapes were cold soaked for seven days. A warm fermentation followed to extract colour and tannin. The wine was fermented with daily pump overs and rack and returns. The young wines showed restrained tannins bursting with black fruit aromas. Malolactic fermentation took place in tank and barrel after which the different blocks where racked and moved to 225L tight grain French oak barrels for maturation. The individual components spent 24 months in 225L French oak barrel of which 62% were new barrels. The Trilogy was meticulously blended by our winemaking team headed up by Chief winemaker Nic van Aarde. The wine spends 26 months in bottle before release to allow the components to harmonize and reach their full potential.
The 2014 vintage produced wines that are more accessible at a younger age than most vintages. Although accessible, the wine will continually improve over the next 10 years at which point the wine will achieve it’s optimal drinkability for at least a further five years. The 2006 growing season was very similar to the 2014 vintage and we expect the vintages to age similarly. When drinking this wine in the first 6 years from vintage we do suggest decanting it for an hour or two before serving to open up the bouquet and soften the tannins.