This vineyard site has proved to be the building block for some of Saint Clair’s finest wines. This is the vineyard where Saint Clair Family Estate first discovered the fruit to make their flagship Saint Clair Wairau Reserve Sauvignon Blanc.
Region: The site was previously part of the Wairau flood plain, which built up the deep free-draining soils.
Regional Characteristics & Contribution To Uniqueness Of Flavours: The highly fertile soils of this vineyard have been built up over time by annual flooding and help to produce the intensity of flavour in the wine. The vineyard is now protected from flooding by a stopbank.
Viticulture: 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.
Winemaking: The juice was pressed off immediately following harvesting to minimise skin contact and juice deterioration. After settling, the juice was fermented using a selected yeast strain in 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.
Colour: Pale straw with a slight green hue.
Aroma: Aromatic white currant and fragrant tropical fruit with a hint of cut grass.
Palate: Luscious ripe grapefruit and green guava flavours. The palate is chalky in texture and has a long lingering finish.
Food Match: Well matched with smoked salmon and steamed green-lipped mussels.
Ageing: Drinking beautifully now and best enjoyed over the next two years.
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2016 Saint Clair Pioneer Block 1 Foundation Block Wairau Valley Sauvignon