#282 Haut Espoir Gentle Giant 2017
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The name behind Haut Espoir’s Gentle Giant has a number of ways it can be interpreted. The most direct historical reference is to the annual presence of elephants in the valley during the Spring time. These “gentle giants” would come to the lush valley to give birth each year.
A slightly more obtuse (although arguably more interesting) reference may be to the grape of Merlot – a cultivar which is the second most widely planted wine grape on the planet (a veritable viticultural giant); renowned for its softer, “gentle” tannins, and plush mid-palate. Merlot is always the backbone to Haut Espoir’s widely acclaimed Gentle Giant blend.
The third more sentimental connection is to the fallen wine hero of Rob Armstrong- the founder of Haut Espoir estate, who not only championed biodynamic winemaking in the valley of Franschhoek, but was also a driving force behind natural conservation initiatives in the area. Rob sadly passed away in 2021, and the Gentle Giant red blend has become a tribute to him in his absence. Rob’s wife Erica now manages Hat Espoir.
In this video we examine some slightly unusual winemaking practises which deliver a wine that manages to be simultaneously large and gentle. Of course, if you have yet to sign up for your Monthly HanDrinksSolo Wine Subscription then you won’t be able to sip along as we discuss this. So to minimize your FOMO, I have left my tasting notes and some technical specs:
👃🏼 A med+ nose of blackcurrant, sweeter Black Plum, Cocoa dust, stewed prunes, lighter raspberry sherbet
👄 Palate carries some black cherry, as well as tarter brighter red cherry and pomegranate notes.
Tannins are delightfully refined and provide a delightfully delicate lattice to support the gently persistent black and red cherry fruit that lingers on the late.
🔬 Wine of Origin Franschhoek. Total production 32,242 bottles. Made by winemaker Marozanne Bieldt.
Fruit is all destemmed and crushed, before being fermented via a combination of native yeasts and inoculation with organic yeast products.
| Alc 14.62% | pH 3.55 | TA 5.9 g/l | RS 1.81 g/l |
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