This wine is a blend from grapes grown on the stony soils of the Gimblett Gravels. The vines in the Ngakirikiri, Twyford and Omahu Gravels vineyards are now approaching 20 years of age and cropped at low levels to produce grapes of the highest possible quality. Intensive viticultural practices such as shoot, bunch thinning and leaf plucking were employed over the course of the growing season to further maximise the vineyards potential.
The individual vineyard parcels were harvested separately and destemmed to our 1930’s open topped concrete fermenters for fermentation. Indigenous and selected red wine yeast strains were employed and once active the ferments were gently hand plunged up to four times daily. After a period of post fermentation maceration the ferments were pressed to barrel and tank for malolactic fermentation. The wine was then aged for 18 months in French oak barriques (40% new) before bottling in December 2015.
This Winemakers Reserve blend is widely regarded as one of the finest of New Zealand’s red wines. The 2014 vintage is deeply coloured with aromatics hinting at black fruits including cherries and blackberries, with hints of cedar and smoke. The flavours, typical of Gimblett Gravels Merlot blends tend toward fruitcake, cherry, chocolate and oak spice. The palate is soft and mouthfilling showcasing the high percentage of Merlot and finishes dry and long. This is a fine vintage for this blend.
Cellaring is recommended but the wine can equally be enjoyed in its youth. Drink 2016 – 2025+.
Region: Hawkes Bay 100%
Varieties: Merlot 54%, Malbec 31%, Cabernet Franc 10%, Cabernet Sauvignon 5%
Total acidity: 6.30gL
Maturation: 18 months in French oak barriques (40% new)
Residual sugar: < 1gL