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Testalonga El Bandito Cortez Chenin 2021


Product Notes


We change the label every year to best suit the feeling I think the wine is giving. The photo on the label was taken by Craig in Tokyo, Japan in 2015 of some graffiti on a wall at about 3am. The image was always in Craigs “future label” folder, and we think it resonates perfectly with the Cortez wine this year. Mysterious but beautiful at the same time. There is no Japanese meaning for the graffiti, so people can feel free to find their own meaning for it.

NAME OF ESTATE/DOMAINE: TESTALONGA                            

NAME OF VIGNERON: Craig & Carla Hawkins


CELLAR LOCATION Bandits Kloof, Eendekuil, Piketberg, Swartland

CLIMATE: Mediterranean

TERROIR: Decomposed Granite, North facing, 200m above sea level, from the Paardeberg.

VITICULTURE: Planted in 1972, dryland bush vine (un-trellised), farmed organically. The vineyard is a special one as it has been farmed organically since 2001 and every year, good or bad, gives a tension we sometimes don’t find in our other wines (as much). This I think is due to the high percentage of quartz/silica in the soil. 2021 Vintage was a good one for us as we had another wet winter which led to good fruit set and balance in the vineyard.

GRAPE: 100% Chenin Blanc

YIELDS: 40hl/ha


Hand harvested and whole bunch pressed. Fermented/Aged in 4 x 500L old French Foudre and a single 1500L stainless steel tank for 6 months then blended together and placed back into wood and stainless steel. No yeast (or other) inoculation or additives apart from a small amount of SO2 shortly before bottling. 100% malolactic fermentation.  A very light clarifying filtration was done using coarse cellulose sheets, not fined.


Alc            11.89%
TA            6.3g/l
pH            3.20
RS             1.7g/l
VA            0.57g/l
fSO2         10ppm
tSO2         24ppm

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