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"Saint Clair not only won the prize for Wine Company of the Year for best overall performance in the tastings, but its chief winemaker Matt Thomson was named Winemaker of the Year for the second time in three years."
Pioneer Block 2 Swamp Block Sauvignon Blanc 2009
WINEMAKER: Matt Thomson
Region:Lower Wairau flood plain.
Soils: Soil: Low lying deep fertile free-draining soils bordering on salty coastal soils.
Topography: Low lying, flat with the lower Wairau drainage ditch to the south.
Climate: Proximity to the coast leads to a cooler climate compared to the rest of the lower Wairau Plain.
Vine Age: Third year cropping.
Regional Characteristics & contribution to Uniqueness of Flavours: The coastal location and the cooler climate mean that there is a longer growing season providing intensity of flavours to the wine. Proximity to coastal salty soils lends a hint of salt on the palate.
Viticulture:The fruit was sourced from a single vineyard on the fertile, free-draining soils of the lower Wairau Valley. The fruit was carefully monitored during ripening and harvested in the cool of the evening at maximum flavour maturity and physiological ripeness.
Winemaking:The juice was pressed off immediately to minimise skin contact and juice deterioration following harvesting. After settling, the juice was fermented using a variety of selected yeast in 100 per cent stainless steel at cool temperatures to retain fruit flavour and freshness. This batch was selected as a Pioneer Block wine due to its intensity of flavour and oily texture on the palate.
Aroma:Intensely lifted notes of blackcurrant and nettles. Pungent tropical aromas of passionfruit and guava.
Palate:This is an intense Sauvignon Blanc with an incredible concentration of flavours and palate weight. Passionfruit, grapefruit and citrus flavours dominate the palate with an underlying mineral and nettle note and a rich round finish.
Cellaring:This wine is drinking beautifully now and may also be enjoyed over the next one to two years.
Alcohol: 13% v/v, Titratable Acidity: 7.8g/litre, Residual Sugar: 4.1g/litre, pH: 3.45.
Food Match:An ideal match with pan-fried scallops and fresh asparagus.
- Trophy Champion Sauvignon Blanc, Tri-Nations Wine Challenge 2010
- Gold, Tri Nations Wine Challenge 2010
- Gold, Liquorland Top 100 2009
- Gold, Air New Zealand Wine Awards 2009
- Gold, NZ International Wine Show 2009
- Gold, Bragato Wine Awards
- 91 points, Wine & Spirits Magazine USA - Issue Feb 2011
- 91 points, Wine Spectator 2010