The growing season, summer 2011-2012 was very cloudy for Nelson, with many records broken. It was the wettest summer on record, and an almighty rain event in December combined with cool temperatures made for a worrying time going into harvest. Would we get enough warm weather in autumn that we needed to fully ripen our grapes? To our great relief April was characterized by frequent highs resulting in very dry and sunny conditions. April sunshine hours being the highest on record for our region and fantastic afternoon maximum temperatures meant full ripeness was at last achieved.
Our Sauvignon Blanc is made from 100% estate-grown fruit from the stony alluvial soils of the Waimea Plains. Choice parcels, blocks and even rows have been used to capture different attributes we wanted to see in the finished wine.
The grapes were machine harvested early morning so the fruit would arrive at the winery quickly and cold. It was then processed without excessive crushing (to minimise phenolic pick up) to the presses. As the pressing cycle progressed a press cut was made - when optimum flavour had been extracted but not overt phenolics. The juice was then cold settled for three days to achieve low solids prior to ferment.
To achieve good aromatic definition, the fermentations were carried out in stainless steel, the musts were inoculated with a range of aromatic yeasts and fermentation temperatures were kept low. For a textural component, a small percentage of the final blend underwent frequent lees stirring for over a month after the completion of ferment. Come mid July we set about blending the individual wines. Each wine was identified
according to the attributes it would contribute and the wine and the wine “built” from here.