These wines take New Zealand fruit on avery different journey. Primarily it involves skin fermentation of white grapes and alternative ways to ferment red grapes. The use of a mix of maturation vessels is central. The wines may only get the merest of Sulphur additions at the end. There are no rules except that the results must be delicious!
Sauvignon Blanc 2016 Skin Fermented
This wine is an extension of the Nattura Sauvignon Blanc process. The wine is destemmed and fermented on skins for a month. The skins are not worked hard, they are included in order to gain all the aromatics possible from the fruit, and to promote a fine thread of phenolic to keep a tension and length in the final wine.
Bottled straight after malolactic with no Sulphur addition, this wine is almost in the rawest form possible. It is cloudy and this adds to the overall textural experience.
Muller Thurgau 2016 Skin Fermented
Muller Thurgau is the forgotten grape of the New Zealand vineyard. Widely planted in the 80’s it’s now a bit of a rarity. The wine from the vines still planted is these days generally lost in to bulk blends.
The fruit for this wine comes from one of the oldest vineyards in Canterbury. The vines are 35+ years old and produce a miserly amount of grapes per plant. I found the idea of using old vine (for New Zealand) fruit and a completely unfashionable grape for a skin fermented white too hard to resist.
The grapes were destemmed and fermented in an open top fermenter and a concrete egg. The open top fermenter was pressed after approximately 6 weeks of skin contact, and put to ancient barrels for a natural malolactic. The concrete egg went through alcoholic and malolactic ferment on skins, and was pressed after 168 days to be blended with the wine in barrels just prior to bottling.
Intensely aromatic, deep cloudy orange with incredible texture, this wine was bottled with a small addition of Sulphur. 20 ppm SO2 Total.