Learn More About This Varietal
Flowering commenced in the first week of December. During this period, the region experienced perfect flowering conditions. January to March produced some of the driest months on record culminating in one of the most exceptional harvests ever seen from the region. Picking began in the 2nd week of March and concluded in the second week of April. The drawn-out nature of the harvest allowed the winemakers to pick at optimal balance and sugar ripeness, as well as physiological ripeness. The warm and fine weather through the late summer months has allowed the development of a riper spectrum of tropical flavours. The resulting wines have wonderful fruit concentration and aromatic power.
Produced from The Angler vineyard on the banks of the Wairau River. The grapes were hand harvested in small bins in the early hours of the morning and returned to the winery. After gentle whole-bunch pressing the juice was fermented in seasoned French oak barriques. Free run juice was kept separate from the pressings and 80% was fermented with cultured yeast while the remaining when through wild fermentation. After aging in French oak the wine was blended and bottled on the Wairau River Estate.
Harvested 30 March 2020
The Wairau Valley is one of three zones – along with the Southern Valleys and the Awatere Valley – which make up the heartland of New Zealand's Marlborough wine region. It accounts for approximately 45 percent of plantings within the wider region. An extensive patchwork of vineyards surrounds the town of Blenheim in the north-eastern corner of the South Island, near where the Wairau River meets the Pacific Ocean.
The Wairau Valley is a wide river valley that follows the Wairau River from the Spenser Mountains in the west to the Pacific at Cloudy Bay. The Richmond Mountains in the north separate it from the sunny region of Nelson, and the Wither Hills in the south protect the valley from harsh weather systems from the south-east.
In the low-lying area along the Wairau River Rapaura and Renwick are the most established zones. However in recent years vineyard plantings have extended further west along the narrow valley floor.
Wairau Valley has a warm, dry climate that is moderated during the growing season by sea breezes from Cloudy Bay. Hot sunshine during the day and cold ocean winds at night extend the ripening period in the grapes, leading to a balance of fruit complexity and acidity. This diurnal temperature variation is essential to the terroir in the Wairau Valley – without it, much of the classic punchiness of the wines made here would be lost.
94 points 5 stars
A wonderful rendition offering rich fruit notes of apricot, mango and orange peel, combined with nuances of rich floral and mixed spice. It's opulent and plush on the palate displaying excellent weight and roundness, backed by well-pitched acidity, finishing long and delectable. At its best: now to 2025.
Fragrant, fruity, varietal and floral bouquet with aromas and flavours of white apricot and red apple, grapefruit and a fine lees texture accentuated by acidity. There's a soft fruit spice layer and stony mineral flavour layering in complexity and mouthfeel. Youthful and delightful, balanced and well made. Drinking well now and through 2024+.
Where are your wines made?
All our wines are made on site in our winery. We draw fruit from our 15 estate vineyards, which means they are owned by us. We built our winery in 2002.
Can I visit your vineyard / winery and do you offer winery tours and tastings?
You can visit our restaurant where you can taste our wines and enjoy a beautiful lunch surrounded by vines, but unfortunately due to health and safety regulations we are unable to have visitors at our winery.
How can I keep the wine fresh once a bottle has been opened?
To keep an open bottle of wine fresh, ensure the cap is tightly sealed after every glass pour. Our white wines and rosé should be stored, cap on, in a refrigerator to slow down oxidisation. For our red wines, keep the wine bottle out of light and stored at room temperature (below 21 degrees Celsius or 70 degrees Fahrenheit), or in a refrigerator.
How long will your wine last when opened?
White wines are good for 1-2 days and red wines for 3-5 days if stored correctly.