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With a very successful 2012 harvest out of the way, the focus now shifts from crushing and pressing our grapes, to preparing the vines for the 2013 harvest. But like humans, the vines need their rest to perform at their optimal level.

We have eased into the routine of shorter days and longer nights, and the vines at Vergenoegd find themselves “resting.” Just like a woman who has recently given birth, the need for rest is essential. You can imagine the fatigue of the vines, having been worked non-stop for the months leading up to the harvest, in order to bare the quality berries needed to produce the uniquely aged Red wines, for which Vergenoegd is renowned.

Winemaker Marlize Jacobs added a new flavour to the historic estate, when her concept to produce a Rosé transformed into an entire range. The Runner Duck range is named after the hard working Indian Runner ducks that swoop through the vineyards clearing the vines of snails and other pests. The range has evolved to include 3 wines, a White, a Rosé and an award winning Red, which is keeping with the trend of South African wine production and including Port varietals in a table wine.

The 2009 Runner Duck Red is a blend of Touriga Naçional, Cabernet franc and Malbec. Having recently picked up the award for best red blend at the Classic Fm Wine competition, the 2009 Runner Duck Red did it again in the 2012 CAPPA Port and Wine Challenge, when it picked up 6th place out of a total of 21 wines. For the first time this year, the judges included table wines which contained a minimum of 30% of Portuguese varietals, in the tasting.

The vines may be resting, but the same cannot be said for the farm workers, who are being kept busy, clearing the Spanish reed species from the riverbanks of the estate.  Some exciting encounters with Mother Nature in the past month, saw our winemaker Marlize Jacobs spot a struggling baby rock kestrel and the critically endangered plant specie the Marasmodes Beyersiana, on the estate. Judging from the injury on the little rock kestrel it would seem that it was shot at, but fortunately thanks to the kind-hearted Marlize, the young one is currently being rehabilitated.

The Marasmodes BeyersianaImage

ImageThe young Rock Kestrel.