Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough Awatere New Zealand
It is a bit of a tradition at Isabel Estate that just before budburst, all the local sheep are rounded up, and the odd goat as well, to be moved off to holding pastures. This is just before the dear ruminants develop a taste for the succulent new shoots which are sprouting. Exposing the ripening bunches to the sun brings on more tropical flavours for a more complete ripeness, this also serves to tame the chilling acidity which can be at teeth dissolving levels in cooler years.
Isabel's Elevation Vineyard sits at over a thousand feet up a delightful northfacing slope which looks down over the vineyards on the Awatere Valley floor. The earliest harvests of vintage contribute hallmark Marlborough characters of cut grass freshness and zingy acidity. The later parcels are more restrained, supple with stonefruit and honey. To maximise flavour profiles and retain freshness, fruit is handled with care, hand picked throughout the chilly hours of early morning. Bunches are kept whole and are treated to a cool maceration in tank. The juices then undergo a slow and cool fermentation, thus preserving the fresh citrus and herbaceous flavours for which Marlborough is renown.
Light straw hue. The nose exhibits a festival of characters, an intensity of grass and herbaceousness. Floral notes of lavender and lemon blossom intermingle with gooseberry and green figs. Exotic fruits such as lychee and fresh guava tantalize. Delicious medley of tangy citrus and minerality express the terroir on the middle palate with silky depth and long length, an elegant Sauvignon Blanc with a well balanced finish.