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Our Wines

Other Vintages: 2016 | 2015 | 2014

Pioneer Block 4 Sawcut Chardonnay 2006

WINEMAKER: Matt Thomson



Ure Valley, about 40 km south of Blenheim. This area is a narrow valley floor protected by hills on three sides with close proximity to the East Coast of the top of the South Island. The area has a unique micro-climate and is ideally suited to the production of top-quality wine.


Soils: Free draining river valley alluvial soils, this

Topography: Flat, on a plateau within the narrow valley

Climate: This is quite a warm site despite it being significantly south. It has a similar number of growing degree days to Blenheim.

Regional Characteristics & contribution to Uniqueness of Flavours:

The high pH and limestone in the soil impact significantly on the flavour of this wine and ensures it has excellent palate weight and fruit intensity. The soil also contributes to the mineral notes on the palate.


The fruit was sourced from a single vineyard on the free draining river valley soils of the Ure Valley. This vineyard is very carefully tended by the grower. The grapes are 100 per cent clone 95 Chardonnay, a clone that originates in Burgundy.


The fruit was hand-picked when it had reached full physiological ripeness and maximum flavour maturity. At the winery the fruit was whole bunch pressed to ensure the best fruit flavours were preserved. After settling, the juice was inoculated with selected yeast strains. The wine was 100 per cent barrel fermented in 50 per cent new, and 50 per cent seasoned American oak. It then went through malolactic fermentation followed by 10 months ageing on yeast lees with regular stirring. The wine was then carefully blended, stabilised with no finings and prepared for bottling.


Pale gold.


Lifted aromas of nectarine and white peach, with a hint of spicy oak.


This elegant Chardonnay shows flavours of nectarine and white peach, supported by underlying minerality and spicy oak characters. The palate is full-bodied with a firm acidity that leads to a warm lingering finish.


Drinking well now, patient cellaring will reward over the next one to five years.


Alcohol: 14%, Titratable Acidity: 6.5g/l, pH: 3.45.

Food Match:

An ideal food wine and is an ideal compliment to roast poultry, seafood risotto or pan fried fish. A great cheese match with Brie or Camembert.