Bouchard Finlayson 2018 Harvest – From The Vineyard To The Cellar

Shop at Bouchard Finlayson

The 2018 vintage from Bouchard Finlayson may just be one of nature’s select offerings, to be gently guided to a fulfilment of its true potential in the winery.                 

The 2018 vintage will long be remembered at Bouchard Finlayson for the benevolent weather conditions that provided a near-perfect foundation to the team’s endeavours in the vineyards and the winery. Bouchard Finlayson Estate & Vineyard Manager Mortimer Lee says that substantial late-winter rain, an early spring, a temperate summer without excessive bouts of summer-rainfall, which in other years often threaten to disrupt best efforts, and favourable ripening-conditions represented a rare synergy of variables, ‘as if the weather-gods had, from the very outset, decreed the 2018-vintage to be of supreme quality.’

‘This was hugely instrumental in promoting a balanced micro-climate within vine-canopies and ensuring that downy mildew, the traditional vineyard-foe, did not spawn its ugly spores at any stage of the 2018 growing-season.’

Picking commenced at a later date than the established norm – another sign of the comparatively mild ripening-phase that had preceded harvesting operations. Each cultivar was harvested at optimum ripeness, (necessitating the extension of harvesting-operations to week-end shifts), with healthy volumes of quality-fruit delivered to the winery. Sugar accumulation and phenolic ripeness had converged timeously – an early, encouraging, indicator of the slightly lower alcohol levels and ideal natural acidity now displayed in the estate’s 2018 range of wines.

Winemaker Chris Albrecht says that ferments progressed smoothly, while whole-bunch fermentation was deliberately utilized to a lesser degree than had been the case in recent years.  ‘We further diversified the range of yeasts used in our ferments – ever-striving for even greater complexity – and fermented in amphora for the very first time! The results – at this early stage – look most promising’, Albrecht concluded.



Established in 1989 in the temperate Hemel-en-Aarde Valley on 125 hectares (312 acres) of Walker Bay’s prime viticultural land, Bouchard Finlayson Vineyard and Winery is a small cellar dedicated to the quality production of Pinot noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon blanc. Ever since releasing their first vintages, the name Bouchard Finlayson has been internationally synonymous with excellence. Today, owned by the Red Carnation Hotels’ Tollman family and under the leadership of Victoria Tollman, founder Peter Finlayson and winemaker Chris Albrecht, 25 hectares (62 acres) of the estate are currently under vine with 50% devoted to the varietal for which Peter is most acclaimed – Pinot noir. Other cultivars under production include Chardonnay, Sauvignon blanc and Sangiovese, as well as a handful under exploration. Bouchard Finlayson is a World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Conservation Champion.

Situated on the R320 near Hermanus, Bouchard Finlayson vineyard and winery is open for tastings and sales Monday to Friday from 09h00 to 17h00 and on Saturdays from 10h00 to 13h00. For further information, call +27 28 312 3515; email; or visit