Vintage 2016 will be remembered for the first year we flew a helicopter at our Mt Maude vineyard, protecting the new spring growth from the often disastrous frosts (the first year in 22 years). It worked. The cooler start to the season meant bunches were smaller than in recent years, yields were lower. Our typically beautiful Central Otago summer and autumn weather, with record high temperatures in February ensured the quality of fruit on the vine. In contrast to the compressed season prior, 2016 gave us time, time on the vines to ripen slowly, develop flavours and harvest when we deemed the grapes perfect – definitely one of our best and most enjoyable seasons to date.
Hand harvested from the West block of the Mt Maude vineyard and our trial vineyards in Lowburn and Bannockburn. All grapes were chilled overnight, whole bunch pressed and barrel fermented dirty (juice that hasn’t been clarified) in seasoned oak puncheons and barriques by indigenous yeasts. A full malolactic fermentation followed with a further 9 months’ maturation in barrel with minimal movement or fining.
TA 5.7 g/l
pH 3.38 g/l