Harvest 2015 was notable across the country for a smaller crop than previous seasons. Just as the growing season got off to a slow start so did the start of harvest. The upshot of the above conditions, and hence the smaller crop, being that we were rewarded with intensely flavoursome fruit.
Four separate, unique, parcels were harvested over an 11 day period for this wine. Three parcels were off the Waimea plains, though all were very different in flavour profile, and one from the heavier soils of Ruby Bay. We scheduled the harvesting for early morning so the fruit arrived cool at the winery, all important for preserving aromatics and minimising excessive phenolic pick up in this variety.
The grapes were gently crushed and pressed with early cuts and the press fractions kept separate for a gentle fining and cold settling. Once clarified the juices were recombined with their pressings as the real intensity of flavour is found here. The juices were then inoculated with a selection of yeast strains chosen to enhance floral, nutty aromas and texture.
Each ferment was carefully monitored so that they were run at temperatures which allowed each yeast to perform its best. The ferments were stopped at the point where we felt they showed the greatest balance and expression. Each wine was then matured on light yeast lees to give further texture and richness to the palate. On the 2nd of July the four very different components were tasted, scrutinised and finally blended. The wine was then prepared for bottling.