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Other Vintages: 2016 | 2015 | 2014

Pioneer Block 1 Foundation Sauvignon Blanc 2011

WINEMAKER: Matt Thomson and Hamish Clark


This vineyard has proved to be the building block for some of Saint Clair’s finest wines. This is the vineyard where the winery discovered the fruit to make their flagship Saint Clair Wairau Reserve Sauvignon Blanc.


The site was previously part of Wairau Flood Plain (which built up the deep free-draining soils). This is the vineyard where Saint Clair discovered the fruit to make the now world famous Wairau Reserve.


Soils: Deep fertile, free-draining soils.

Topography: Flat

Climate: Slightly cooler than most of the Marlborough Valley with a slower longer ripening period.

Regional Characteristics & contribution to Uniqueness of Flavours:

The free-draining alluvial soils of this vineyard have been built up over time by flooding. These freedraining fertile soils produce the intensity of flavour in the wine. The vineyard is now protected by a stopbank. The unique flavours are the combination of powerful passionfruit and honeysuckle.


The fruit was sourced from a single vineyard owned by the Sowman family 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.


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 power and intensity of flavour.


Pale straw


Powerful and intense aromas of passionfruit,blackcurrant, hints of grapefruit and an underlying mineral note.


This is an intense Sauvignon Blanc with a powerful passionfruit and blackcurrant spectrum and an underlying mineral tone. The palate is intensely concentrated and full with a long, lingering finish.


This wine is drinking beautifully now and may also be enjoyed over the next two years.


Alcohol: 13% v/v, Titratable Acidity: 7.8g/litre, Residual Sugar: 2.9g/litre, pH: 3.46.

Food Match:

An ideal match with fresh Marllborough salmon or scallops with fresh salad.



  • Trophy for Sauvignon Blanc, Concours Mondial du Sauvignon, Brussels 2012 Special Trophy - Sauvignon Blanc <10€
  • Trophy, Concours Mondial du Sauvignon, Brussels 2012 Special trophy - Sauvignon Blanc Unoaked <10€
  • Gold, Royal Easter Show Wine Awards, 2012
  • Top 100 and Blue Gold, Sydney International Wine Competition 2012
  • Pure Silver, Air New Zealand Wine Awards 2011
  • Silver, Decanter World Wine Awards 2012
  • Silver, International Wine Challenge, UK 2012
  • 90 points, Wine Enthusiast USA