Neal and Judy Ibbotson were pioneers in the Marlborough wine industry, first planting vineyards in the valley in 1978 and then establishing Saint Clair Family Estate in 1994. They own 160 hectares of vineyard in 10 different Marlborough locations chosen specifically for the attributes of their individual "terroir" and ability to produce top quality grapes. Neal Ibbotson combines his extensive expertise in viticulture with the talent of one of New Zealand's leading winemaking teams led by Hamish Clark. Since 1994, when wines from the first vintage all won medals including gold, the name Saint Clair has been synonymous with quality and its award-winning record continues today. This is a sentiment shared by Bob Campbell MW, who says “Saint Clair now makes the country’s and perhaps the world’s best Sauvignon Blanc”.
The fruit for this wine was selected from vineyards across Marlborough’s sub regions, including the Wairau Valley. In this region a magical synergy of climate and soil come together to produce wines with extraordinary purity of fruit. Situated in the north eastern corner of New Zealand's South Island, the vineyards are surrounded by the Pacific Ocean to the east and hinterland mountain ranges to the north and south.
Flowering conditions in December were perfect, followed by the hottest temperatures Marlborough has experienced in January. February produced a month of rainfall. Despite these challenging weather conditions, the fruit ripened well - 10 days earlier than usual. Effective methods of canopy management and cropping levels; and extended dry periods in March kept the vines healthy. Lower yields produced ripe and intensely flavoured fruit in 2018.
The fruit was carefully monitored throughout maturity and was harvested upon reaching optimum flavour development and ripeness. The grapes were immediately transported to the winery and pressed with minimal skin contact; the resulting juice was cool fermented in stainless steel to retain freshness and aromatics.
Sauvignon Blanc 100%.
Aromas of passionfruit and blackcurrant are complemented by fresh, lifted notes of green leaf and a hint of flint. The succulent and flavoursome palate is imbued with citrus flavours, grapefruit, blackcurrant and layered with a mineral note. Ideal on its own or with light dishes such as chicken or a seafood salad.
ABV = 13.0%.