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Big Rock Chardonnay 2020 (case of 6 bottles)


Known to every Hilton boy until its sudden disappearance in the 1987 floods, Big Rock was a legendary Estate feature. Some think it rolled downstream, but it more than likely sank due to its size. Who knows?

Ageing Potential

Enjoy now or allow to age for maximum result and enjoyment.

Blend Information

100% Chardonnay

Food Pairing

This wine combines well with seafood and white meat dishes.

Platter’s Notes

“Linear & focused chardonnay, with honeyed orange blossom, mineral-lime centre, 2020 right up there with previous in quality & value. Ferment/9 months in 500L barrels, 20% new, somewhat prominent mid-2021, should integrate with time.”



The profile of this wine is based on the vines planted on a variation of Shale and Clay-based soils. The wine therefore expresses the zip and texture of the clay on the palate and aromatic lime, white floral and stone fruit, mineral character on the nose. Enjoy now or allow to age for maximum result and enjoyment. This wine combines well with seafood and white meat dishes.

The Vineyard

This offering is produced from shy-bearing vineyards that are situated on Babylon Farm in the Ward of Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge, Walker Bay. The wine, a clear and true reflection of the potential of the unique soils and maritime site situated in the hills above Hermanus, is released a year after vintage as a prime example of maritime influenced Chardonnay.

Varietal: Chardonnay 100%
Origin: Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge
Soil Type: Planted to Argillaceous Shale of the Bokkeveld Series
Aspect: North West, South and South East
Trellising System: Vertical Shoot Positioning (Perold)
Age of Vines: 12 – 13years
Vines per hectare: 5400 – 6000
Average Yield: 8 tons/ha
Production: 2970cases of 6 x 750ml bottles


These Walker Bay vineyards of Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge are situated within close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. The maritime climate is more “temperate” in style, where parallel mountain ranges channel the southerly sea breezes through the appellation during the summer. These winds in turn bring regular sea mists and overcast conditions to the valley and with it more even temperatures. The average temperature is 19° C and rainfall, approximately, 750mm per year.

The Harvest

All grapes were harvested by hand in cool early morning temperatures. The grapes were harvested in 6 different batches at the end of February 2020. This ensures a more complex wine profile and express terroir and clone variation. Earlier picking to capture the perfumed green citrus fruit profile and the later portion to ensure complexity on the palate.


Alcohol by Volume 13.37%
Total Acidity 6.3 g/L
pH 3.43
Volatile Acid 0.57 g/L
Residual Sugar 3.0g/L

Technical Notes

This Chardonnay blend was compiled of six different vineyards. Grapes from these batches were harvested early in the morning and then pressed at cold temperatures to preserve flavours and aromas. The juice was left to settle for a period of 24-36 hours at 10° C. The Chardonnay juice is then gravity fed into a selection of Burgundian oak puncheons (500L) and fermented until the wine is dry. A selection of new puncheons (20%) was used in the entire blend with the remainder a selection of older puncheons. The wine was then matured on gross lees in the barrels for 8 months with minimal stirring. The wine was then blended one month prior to bottling.