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The 2015 vintage

The hallmark for this vintage was the hot weather, but without the drought that may follow from heat. Each other week there were sufficient and sometimes abundant of rainfall. The vines (maybe except for the new planted ones) were never really stressed and was never forced to block the grapes. The result was perfectly ripen grapes in the beginning of October. The only problem with the weather during 2015 was the continues raining starting at our harvest, which made it difficult to find dry days for picking. (And of course the sun came back when the harvest were completed).

Botrytis never come alone

Already in mid September there were a lot of botrytis attacking, and it turned out beautifully, and was strong enough to not be washed away by any rain. Later on there were added some new botrytis, but not so good as the first. Even when very good botrytis has developed, there are always some rotten grapes that has not taken the noble direction, and ends up as grey rot. What is important is that the botrytis ratio must completely outshine the grey rot, to be acceptable. This vintage it surely did, see below photo.

Our harvest principles

Villa Sandahl has a policy to harvest as late as possible. In fact, we harvest only when we are forced to, which happen when:
- acidity gradually dropping too low.
- sugar (and thereby alcohol) gradually rising too high.
- anything else rising sugar (and thereby alcohol) too much
   like botrytis, grapes shriveling, etc.
- grey rot preserves and never transform to botrytis.
- winter sets in and prevents grapes to ripen further..

Harvest in reverse order

Since prolonged rain was forecasted in the middle of October, we faced the risk of grey rot or poor botrytis, and we decided to pick. Since the risk was high that we would not get enough time to harvest all vineyards before the rain, we decided to harvest the best vineyards first. (Yes, with such strategy we didn't give our best grapes an extra chance for some more days of sunshine).
The final order of harvest was:
- 2015-10-09 Bishop Backyard 4 400 kg
- 2015-10-09 Genesis high 2 525 kg
- 2015-10-12 Genesis low 2 875 kg
- 2015-10-13 Rest of Genesis 4 875 kg
- 2015-10-21 Bishop Garden 1 610 kg
- Sum 16 285 kg
As can be seen from above, we succeed to harvest everything, apart from Bishop Garden, before the heavy rain.

This vintage was so good, that the 3rd fraction we usually sell as juice to other wineries, this time we kept ourself for making a delicious standard quality wine. The 1st and 2nd fractions we achieved as usual. Interestingly, the Bishop backyard had 15 % perfect botrytis and Genesis high almost no botrytis at all. The other vineyards had botrytis between these ends.
After pressing we fermented the following Riesling juice:
- 810 liter Bishop Backyard 1st fraction for 87 days
- 640 liter Bishop Backyard 2nd fraction for 92 days
- 560 liter Genesis high 1st fraction for 108 days
- 440 liter Genesis high 2nd fraction for 100 days
- 1790 liter Genesis 1st fraction for 121 days
- 960 liter Genesis 2nd fraction for 107 days
- 380 liter Bishop Garden 1st fraction for 60 days
- 580 liter Bishop Garden 2nd and 3rd fraction for 71 days
- 2 570 liter 3rd fractions for 107 days
We normally use cultivated yeast from Alsace, which is so gentle that it barely manage to ferment to dryness (14 % alcohol and 5 grams residual sugar at 15 ºC). This year we had some problems with wild yeast, which fermented too fast in the beginning, but was not capable to ferment to dryness in the end. With cultivated yeast we usually manage to ferment in a steady pace for the entire duration, which is crucial to obtain high quality.

Last week in April we tasted the 9 tanks and some of these were blended like below.
Standard wine:
- Circa 3 500 bottles of all 3rd fractions
Premium blended wines:
- Circa 2 300 bottles of all Bishop Garden and Genesis 2nd fractions
Premium vineyard wine:
- Circa 2 800 bottles of Genesis high 1st and Genesis 1st fractions.
Selected vineyard wines:
- Circa 750 bottles of Bishop backyard 2ndfraction.
- Circa 520 bottles of Genesis high 2nd fraction.
- Circa 1 000 bottles of Bishop backyard 1stfraction
In total circa 11 000 bottles which will be produced during June.


The theme for the labels is "Fragrances of 2015", which means that each of the wines has a smell that is exemplified with the label.

Click on the label to get high resolution.

Bella Sunrise

The standard wine has a label "Bella Sunrise", recalling the smell from morning dew when going home from a late party.

The wine is made from the 3rd fraction juice from all vineyards, which we normally sell in mediocre vintages, but was quite excellent in 2015, with some nice botrytis. It is typically of the Sandahl house style, but a little fresher and lighter in body.

Tasting soon after bottling (summer 2016):
Color: Light yellow
Smell: Open and available, nice smell of herbs, grass and as it should a smell of morning dew.
Taste: Straightforward, clean and pure, of course not as rich as our vineyard selections, but nevertheless a soft, broad and lush wine, with a nice clean after taste.
Judgement: A wine to enjoy in gulps, in the garden or an outdoor seating, with or without food.

See the QR code information

Analysis (OBI):
Alcohol: 13.9 %
Sugar: 7.1 g/l
Acidity: 5.2 g/l
Vol.acid: 0.44 g/l
Bottle: 750 ml

Tussilago Farfara

This wine has a label "Tussilago Farfara", reminding of the smell of this lovely plant, blooming early in spring in wet ditches aside of the road. The Hungarian name is "martilapu" and it seems not so common in this country as it is in Sweden.

The Bishop Garden vineyard has recently been grafted to Rhine Riesling and has not fully recovered, which result in a bit lighter juice. Genesis 2nd fraction gives a sturdy juice which perfectly balances the Bishop Garden lighter juice, both with some botrytis. This wine has a lovely flowery tone, reminding of Tussilago amongst other.

Tasting soon after bottling (summer 2016):
Color: Light yellow
Smell: Shy, soft smell from - yes tussilago (martilapu in Hungarian) and wood anemones (fa kökörcsin), well made pure and fresh, herbs and flowers.
Taste: Not the power compared to the vineyard wines, but very attractive with soft acidity, fine straightforward after taste without any bitterness.
Judgement: Nice attractive wine for a sip in the garden

See the QR code information

Analysis (OBI):
Alcohol: 13.2 %
Sugar: 6.1 g/l
Acidity: 5.6 g/l
Vol.acid: 0.32 g/l
Bottle: 750 ml

Wet Stones

The premium vineyard wine has a label "Wet stones" since it reminds of the smell of Bazalt stones that has been wet from a summer rain.

This juice is entirely from the Genesis vineyard 1st fractions. It has a lovely smoky and mineral character reminding of wet Bazalt stones, with some botrytis. Since it is 1st fractions, it is a step-up in quality compared with the two previous wines.

Tasting soon after bottling (summer 2016):
Color: Light yellow
Smell: Strikingly amount of lemon and associated mineral and smoke from wet stones.. Not overly botrytised, but more pure, stylish and fresh.
Taste: Good body, nice acidity and good concentration., and very good for its price range. Good, clean after taste.
Judgement: Serious wine with good development potential

See the QR code information

Analysis (OBI):
Alcohol: 13,8 %
Sugar: 6.1 g/l
Acidity: 5.7 g/l
Vol.acid: 0.50 g/l
Bottle: 750 ml

Bear glue

This selected vineyard wine has a label called "Bear glue". The smell from this wine reminds so much about a glue used in Swedish schools several decades ago. This glue was very pupil friendly and could be smelled and even eaten without danger. The smell from the glue came from added almond essence.. The glue is still on the market, now sold under the name "Coccoina".

This juice is from Bishop Backyard 2nd fraction and is really powerful with a lot of botrytis. We have now harvested a couple of years from Bishop Backyard, and it seems this vineyard is extremely prone to botrytis. Much botrytis gives high alcohol and rich body, and if carefully vinified, the power is not on the cost of elegance.

Tasting soon after bottling (summer 2016):
Color: Light yellow
Smell: Flowery, lime, apricot and almonds like from bear glue.
Taste: Lovely balance, good rich body, thick in the mouth, colossal after taste lasting for a minute.
Judgement: Bold and dramatic wine, exciting to follow by bottle ageing

See the QR code information

Analysis (OBI):
Alcohol: 14.1 %
Sugar: 7.1 g/l
Acidity: 5.5 g/l
Vol.acid: 0.50 g/l
Bottle: 750 ml

Citrus x Limon

This selected vineyard wine has a label "Citrus x Limon". This is a crossing known as Lemon, which stinks from this wine.

This juice are from Genesis high 2nd fraction. Genesis high is seldom attacked with botrytis, and this is the only 2015 wine not containing any botrytis (typically resulting in low volatile acidity).. Because of that it stinks from lemon, with a power from the 2nd fraction.

Tasting soon after bottling (summer 2016):
Color: Light yellow
Smell: Lemons and grated lemon peel, sponge cake, vanilla, apricots, grapefruit, lovely stylish smell.
Taste: Balanced with soft acidity, rich, thick but still a bit classic in style. Long, fat after taste.
Judgement: Grapes without botrytis resulted in the the most classic wines of our 2015. Has a decade of potential development in bottle.

See the QR code information

Analysis (OBI):
Alcohol: 13.7 %
Sugar: 6.8 g/l
Acidity: 6.0 g/l
Vol.acid: 0.37 g/l
Bottle: 750 ml

Dry honey

This selected vineyard wine has a label "Dry honey", because it smells a lot from honey (but is not sweet).

This is our top quality wine made of juice from Bishop Backyard 1st fraction. It has everything what can be desired in a single package, everything from rich concentration to delicate smell, rarely seen from other than world class vineyards and producers. Try it to believe it.

Tasting soon after bottling (summer 2016):
Color: Middle yellow
Smell: No surprise - a lot of honey, also lime, elegant botrytis in the background, fresh.
Taste: Rich, mighty, well made, without any sharp corners, stylishness beats body, typically the 20115 vintage.
Judgement: A majestic wine with the elegance intact, seldom seen combination of power and subtleness.

See the QR code information

Analysis (OBI):
Alcohol: 14.5 %
Sugar: 5.5 g/l
Acidity: 5.3 g/l
Vol.acid: 0.63 g/l
Bottle: 750 ml