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The single vineyard ‘Pioneer Block’ wines of Saint Clair require separate handling, the winery using 250 small tanks to manage this. The amount of detail for winemakers Matt Thomson and Hamish Clark and their team is considerable, but the result is a fascinating range of wines that express their origin and site. In essence Saint Clair is bottling ‘terroir’ for keen wine enthusiasts to ponder and enjoy. The quality per se of the ‘Pioneer Block’ wines has been extremely high as well, reflecting the identification of superior as well as individual vineyards by Saint Clair’s owner Neal Ibbotson.
Pioneer Block 12 Lone Gum Gewurztraminer 2008
WINEMAKER: Matt Thomson
Soils: Free-draining, mix of stones and lighter soils.
Climate: Warmer area of the inland South Western Wairau Plains
Vine Age: 13 years
Regional Characteristics & contribution to Uniqueness of Flavours: This is a warmer site with early budburst allowing a long ripening period well into the late autumn. Hang time increases the intensity and ripeness of the characteristic Gewurztraminer aromas and gives a rich weight to the palate.
Viticulture:The fruit was sourced from the Lone Gum vineyard in the Dog Point region. Destined for a full, ripe weighty style with no botrytis influence the fruit was carefully monitored during ripening and harvested in the cool of the evening at maximum flavour maturity
and physiological ripeness.
Winemaking:The fruit was crushed and allowed several hours of skin contact at cool temperatures to extract the full complement of flavour, phenolic and aroma compounds required. Following the settling period the clear juice was racked taking with it a portion of the light ‘fluffy’ lees, and then fermented using selected yeast in 100 per cent stainless steel at cool temperatures to retain fruit flavour and freshness.
Aroma:A beautifully intense wine with pungent Gewurztraminer characters of Turkish delight, rose petals and lifted notes of spice.
Palate:The wine is full-bodied and has a soft, round, oily texture on the palate showing rose petals and Turkish delight, with touches of lychee and cinnamon.
Cellaring:This wine is drinking beautifully now and may also be enjoyed over the next two to four years.
Alcohol: 13% v/v, Titratable Acidity: 4.2g/litre, Residual Sugar: 13.8g/litre, pH: 3.80.
Food Match:This wine is an ideal match with Asian cuisine, smoked meats and cheeses.
- Trophy, Decanter World Wide Awards London 2009 International Dry Aromatic over £10
- Trophy Champion Gewurztraminer, Bragato Wine Awards 2009
- Trophy, Decanter World Wine Awards London 2009 New Zealand Dry Aromatic over £10
- Gold, Bragato Wine Awards 2009