At the northeastern tip of the South Island of New Zealand, Marlborough enjoys a temperate climate with high sunshine hours, moderate day temperatures and cool nights. It is ideally suited to producing aromatic wines showing strong varietal intensity. Marlborough’s earliest commercial Sauvignon Blanc wines date back to the late 1970s when grape growing was being pioneered in the region.
This wine was produced from two vineyard sites (one in Brancott to the south and one on Raupara Road to the north of the Wairau Valley) with each contributing to the spectrum of flavors in the blend. The 7-year-old vines were cane pruned and VSP trellised.
In each vineyard, the grapes are harvested in two lots to encourage flavor complexity. The fruit is de-stemmed, cooled and the juice is left in contact with the skins for 4 hours before a gentle pressing. Two different yeast strains are used to maximize varietal flavor. Fermentation at 12-14ºC takes place in tank and the wine is bottled young, with no malolactic fermentation to retain the wine’s fresh, clean acidity. With a nose typical of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, the wine has intense passion fruit, gooseberry and mango aromas, with herbal notes of heather, nettle and grass. It has a lively palate of tropical fruits with crisp lime acidity and lingering passion fruit.
Lifted, ripe passion fruit on nose with guava and white peach. Complex layers of gooseberry fruit with capsicum, lime and boxwood. Full bodied, textured palate of tropical fruit and white peach with a crisp limey edge. Hints of boxwood, dried herb and anise add interest. Long, lingering finish with passionfruit and limey acidity.
Score: 89 PointsWine Spectator Author: MaryAnn Worobiec
Pear, honeysuckle and marmalade flavors finish crisp and lively, with mouthwatering acidity. Drink now.
Score: 90 PointsWine Enthusiast Author: Joe Czerwinski
These entry-level Sauvignons rarely improve with age, so drink this one up before the end of 2017 for its exuberant notes of passion fruit and gooseberry. Its medium in weight, with perhaps a tickle of residual sugar, but finishes crisp and long, with mouthwatering acids.
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