Our wines can be ordered from:
Tel: +27 (0)21 876 2244
Fax: +27 (0)21 876 2398
We came to Franschhoek from the UK in April 2001 having purchased Auberge La Dauphine. In September 2002 we acquired the small adjoining vineyard with established Merlot vines in desperate need of care and attention. In February 2003 a small harvest was picked. It was processed & put into just 2 barrels by us with expert advice & guidance from Dominic Burke the award winning wine maker at La Corounne.
After 20 months maturing in the barrels, 445 bottles were filled and the result – a powerful full-bodied but soft Merlot, high alcohol – has been enjoyed by family and friends.
In 2004 we made a further 450 barrels again only for our own consumption and was equally well-received by everyone who drank it.
In 2005 we decided to sell the guest house and sub-divide the property. This was the last year that we would own all the vines and so, buoyed up by the reception the previous two vintages had had, we decided to pick as much of the Merlot as possible paying attention to quality rather than quantity. Dominic had by now moved on and so we asked independent wine maker Justin Hoy to make the wine.
We picked 5 tons of the best grapes and filled 15 barrels which stayed in the cellar of Bo La Motte, a neighbouring farm, for 20 months.
We were so delighted with the result that we felt it was time to make it available to the world at large and so now our 2005 vintage is on sale.
We did not harvest in 2006 but in 2007 we picked about 2 tons of Merlot and, for the first time, 1 ton of Cabernet Sauvignon. These are currently maturing in the barrel at Justin’s farm in Elgin and promising to be very good.
The name of this wine originates from the Cape Cobra seen on the farm in 2002 & John’s genuine AC Shelby Cobra that he has owned for 30 years & brought with him to South Africa.
CAPE COBRA MERLOT 2005
Bright garnet reaches to the rim in a flash of youthful exuberance. On the nose, it has an intriguing aroma of luscious raspberries, cherries interlaced with cinnamon and nutmeg. The elegant fruit follows through to the palate where it combines well with the tannins to give a soft, silky and lingering finish.
Ripe fruit provide Merlot-typical soft entry leading to full mouth feel of dry tannins and lively acidity.
Grape type 100% Merlot
Harvest Date February 2005
Alc : 14.5 %
Sugar : 3.1g/l
pH : 3.54
TA : 6.3g/l
Yield per hectare (Ave), 8 tons per hectare
5 tons handpicked at 23° to 26° Balling. Destalked and cold soaked for 2 days. Fermented using Lalvin M yeast at temperature between 25°C and 30°C. 12 days post fermentation maceration, then racked to 225 litre French & American oak barrels. 33% new fill. Malo-lactic fermentation occurred in barrel. Barrel matured for 16 months.
Wine Maker: JUSTIN HOY
Studied at Elsenburg Agricultural College Stellenbosch 1997-99.
Wine maker at Monte Rochelle Wine Estate 1999-2004 (20,000 cases per year). During this period he also worked a Vintage in Burgundy & one in Bordeaux.
From 2004 he has focussed on small wine estates in Franschhoek & the surrounding wine lands & quickly established himself as the leading & much in demand independent wine maker.