Thelema Rabelais 2009

Rabelais is a blend of our best Bordeaux components selected from the 2009 vintage. The wine shows extraordinary concentrations of luscious dark berries, cherries and cedar wood on the nose. The fruit intensity follows through onto the palate with a lovely, long finish. A great investment wine.


The carefully selected components of this wine lend themselves perfectly to long term cellaring, 10 – 15 years.

Food Pairing

This complex and full-bodied wine complements beef and game dishes.

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Tasting Notes

Varietal Cabernet Sauvignon (80%), CS 338C Petit Verdot (15%), Clone PV 219A Merlot (5%), Clone MO 192/434
Root stock 101-14 and R99
Soil type Hutton – decomposed granite
Age of vines Planted 2002/2003 & 1988
Plant density 2000 and 2110 vines per hectare respectively
Trellising Vertical hedge
Pruning 2-bud spurs every 12cm
Yield 6,6 tons/ha (Cabernet), 6.1 tons/ha (PV), 11 tons/ha (Merlot)
Irrigation Supplementary drip
Vintage Like 2008, there was a late start to the 2009 harvest. Long, moderate to dry warm spells led to near perfect ripening conditions. Possibly one of the best vintages the Cape has seen.
Picking date 11th March (Cabernet), 17th March (PV) & 4th March (Merlot)
Grape sugar 25.4 °B (Cabernet), 25.29 °B (PV) & 25.4 °B (Merlot)
Acidity 25.4 balling (Cabernet), 25.29 balling (PV) & 25.4 balling (Merlot)
pH at harvest 3.63 (Cabernet), 3.99 (PV) & 3.64 (Merlot)
Yeasts Natural occurring yeasts
Fermentation temp 27 °C
Method De-stalked, hand sorted, crushed, pumped into stainless steel fermentation tanks, cold soak for two days, and pumped over twice a day for 5 days, an aerated pump over in the morning and a closed circulation in the afternoon. After fermentation the wine is left on the skins for 2 days before pressing, once pressed wine is racked to barrel for malolactic fermentation.
Wood Maturation 20 months in 80% new 225 L French oak barrels
Residual Sugar 1.4 g/l
pH 3.67
Total acid 5.7 g/l
Alcohol 14.59% by volume
Maturation 2013 – 2030

Rabelais is a blend of the best Bordeaux components within our Thelema range from the 2009 vintage. During our annual vintage review individual barrels are identified and earmarked for the Rabelais blend, which is complex, elegant and structured. Extraordinary concentrations of luscious dark berries and cedar wood on the nose complemented by a lovely sweet fruit character on the palate. The wine finishes long and firm. It will reward cellaring.

All vintages:

2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008