This 2019 Sauvignon Blanc is a blend from four specially selected vineyards in two different sub-regions of Marlborough. We have focused on this sub-regional combination for the last 12 or so years, as we love the resultant style of Sauvignon Blanc. Two of the vineyards are in the upper Awatere – Shamrock & Trelawne Farm - and two are in the Wairau, one being our certified organic home block here in Renwick, and the other is a young block owned by Jason’s younger brother Kurt. The growing conditions in the Awatere are characterised by cooler temperatures and slower ripening than in the Wairau, which is all important for flavour development and ripe acidity. The wines from this sub-region tend to be more restrained in their youth but have great texture, structure and longevity. Our home block and Kurt’s experience the warmer days of the Wairau Valley and a bigger diurnal range. These climatic factors combined with our clay loam soil here, results in wines which have great texture and fleshiness and are characterised by riper tropical notes with stone-fruit with a lovely line of minerality.
Over the spring of 2018 we experienced regular rainfall which was great, but a big downpour over flowering significantly reduced the crops in our earlier varieties, so much so that those were down about 30% on our usual tonnage. The summer that followed was one of the warmest on record, and was also very dry, with many areas of Marlborough facing water restrictions and some growers even having their water cut off. The very dry growing season from late December through to mid-March has led to small bunch sizes and small berries across the board. These summer conditions, in combination with our low crops, has led to 2019 being our earliest harvest ever with our first fruit into the winery on 1st March and harvest completed by the first week in April. The resultant wines have great depth of flavour and fleshiness with purity of fruit, bright aromatics and ripe, juicy acidity
The grower vineyards were select machine picked and the home block portion was hand-picked and hand-sorted. The free-run and soft pressings parcels were combined for fermentation. The majority of the parcels underwent slow, cool fermentation in stainless steel, with 12.5% of the blend fermented at warmer temps in older French oak demi-muids. All parcels spent time on fine lees post-ferment for texture. This wine has not been fined and is suitable for vegans and vegetarians and anyone else who loves authentic, delicious, hand-made wines.
Our 2019 release shows lovely ripe Awatere characters of guava, white currant and elderflower coupled with the Wairau hallmarks of passionfruit and tropical notes, plus hints of basil and lime. These follow through to the palate, which is fine and soft with loads of fleshy fruit balanced by a ripe, juicy acidity and lingering minerality. There is real fruit weight here and that is complimented by lovely texture from the time on lees and the barrel parcels. - Anna Flowerday, TWR