‘Cause we need stuff that doesn’t mention “cooling sea breezes” or advises that the wine “goes well with pizza, pasta, white meat, red meat or simply on its own”.
Back label for Springfield Wild Yeast Chardonnay 2006 reads: Vines are unaware that humans turn their grapes into wine. They are destined to attract birds – with sugar as the lure to transplant their seeds. These favoured seeds will then have a head start in a competitive forest, for they are fertilised by the bird’s droppings. However should the bird not pitch, the vine would very much like to re-use the sugar it has produced so laboriously.
So over time it evolved a unique system to ferment this sugar. The grape will first develop a waxy layer to attract the wild yeast it so greatly desires. The yeast then breaks down the skin and ferments the sugar into alcohol. Then vinegar bacteria, also present, will turn this wild wine into an organic type of vinegar, dripping into the forest floor t nourish the mother plant – to present a new crop of seeds next year.
We allow these fickle yeasts to live in our vineyard by not applying the usual sprays to kill them. We endure their temperament while they ferment their wine in our cellar. And only if it is special enough, will we present it – like the mother vine – to the wild world.
Tasting note: Having a bit of a thing for Chardonnay with some age at the moment on this site – see comments on Sterhuis Barrel Selection 2006 and Mulderbosch Barrel Fermented 2005. Springfield Wild Yeast 2006 is unwooded and yet shows great texture and palate weight. Flavours of tropical fruit and honey. Substantial but well balanced with a good line of acidity. Top stuff.