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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.
Saint Clair 2008 Vintage
A medium-bodied Merlot with lifted aromas of ripe plums, redcurrants and hints of toasty oak.
Aroma:Aromas of plums, currants and tobacco leaf.
Palate:A medium bodied Merlot with ripe plum and redcurrant characters combined with hints of toasty oak. The palate has youthful well balanced acidity that leads to a warm lingering finish.
Ageing potential:Drinking well now this wine will continue to develop and delight over the next one to three years.
Winemaking:The fruit for this wine came from several warm vineyard sites in the
Rapaura area, selected for the flavours they add to this blend. The fruit was carefully monitored during ripening and was harvested at optimum maturity. At the winery the fruit was destemmed and inoculated for ferment using selected strains of yeast. During ferment the cap was managed carefully in order to obtain optimum extraction from the fruit. After ferment the fruit was pressed and a portion of this wine was racked to used oak where it underwent malolactic fermentation for enhanced integration of tannin and flavour. After ageing on lees for eight months the wine was blended, balanced and prepared for bottling.
Alcohol: 13% v/v, Titratable Acidity: 5.5g/litre, Residual Sugar: 2.1g/litre, pH: 3.58.
Food match:Ideal with spaghetti bolognaise, lamb shanks or with barbecued steak.