We are delighted to unveil our new creation – a red wine blend that unifies every essential part of Avondale’s unique philosophy. A reflection of the unseen that binds all life, the wine is Avondale’s Navitas – its name is the Latin word signifying energy.
This first release of Navitas, finely crafted from nature’s bounty, hails from the 2008 harvest vintage. A Rhone blend, it is led by Syrah and Mourvedre with a small portion of Grenache grapes from organically cultivated, 18-year-old vines.
“Up to now, all our wines have expressed parts of the Avondale philosophy, which centres on completely natural winemaking processes and recognition of fundamental environmental forces – seen and unseen – that are at play in the vineyard and cellar,” says Avondale proprietor and viticulturist Johnathan Grieve. “In Navitas, we want to demonstrate this to the fullest. Our intention is to express everything in a single wine.”
For the making of Navitas 2008, the grapes were hand-picked and entire bunches were fermented completely naturally. The wine received no additives. “Gentle, natural heat that is generated from the fermentation, along with maturation for 18 months in 600-litre oak barrels has resulted in elevated fruit expression, minerality, terroir expression and overall luminescence,” says Grieve.
Navitas 2008 is light and elegant, providing a multi-layered sensory experience that awakens with bright fruit clarity on the nose and palate, and lingers long after.
The wine bears Avondale’s logo, a rendition of the Armillary sphere, an ancient astronomical instrument used to show the position of stars around the Earth. It represents Avondale’s holistic approach to life on the farm where, from the minerals in the soil to the stars in the sky, all is combined in an energised, living system.
Released in a limited quantity, the wine takes centre-stage in Avondale’s portfolio of seven extraordinary wines approved by Mother Nature. The Navitas single-bottle packaging was conceived to reinforce this prestige, and leading innovator Wiid Design was engaged for the task. Each bottle is carefully nestled in a stylish cork-and-aluminium container that reflects Avondale’s natural approach. It also provides an inviting and luxuriously tactile experience even before the wine is opened.
“This product represents a wonderful like-minded awareness of nature in design and a shared respect for Wiid and Avondale’s aesthetics,” says Laurie Wiid van Heerden of Wiid Design. “I thought it would be interesting to combine the sharp clinical precision, but yet subtleness of Wiid Design’s style with Avondale’s interconnected and interdependent ethos. These original and custom designed packaging bring a second life to the product; it emphasises the high value of its contents, similar to that of honey in a honeycomb, which is that of Avondale’s signature wine. The hexagonal dark cork lid and base reference nature; the cork material also relates directly to the tradition of wine and wine making.”
The cork is 100% sustainable, natural and biodegradable, and the gold hexagonal components are manufactured with absolute precision and hand fitted with brass and leather.
“We’re very proud of the result,” says Jonathan Grieve, “When we started this project we wanted the packaging to reflect the exclusiveness of the wine and at the same time have an alternative use or afterlife. Each container that holds a bottle of Navitas provides a linear fit with another to create a ‘wine-comb’ that delivers the best presentation of our wines.”
The Avondale Navitas 2008 is priced at R1 500 a bottle and is available from selected, exclusive wine retailers and directly from Avondale.