Friday, February 8, 2013

New Zealand Pinot!

What do you know about New Zealand wines?  For me I know they have the southern most vineyards in the world (Central Otago), produce world class Sauv Blancs, and are now making a push to produce more Pinot Noir.  But that's about it.
Hayden Johnston

So it was a joy for me to participate in the Flying Winemaker's Master class hosted by Hayden Johnston, owner of Tarras Vineyards.  Hayden is an ex-accountant (familiar story) who was in a car accident while living in London.  During his recovery he returned home to NZ, did some meditating about life, and decided he needed a change.  He and his wife moved back to New Zealand, bought up 3 hectares of land in Central Otago, and got planting!  

Thanks, Simon!

They currently exclusively grow Pinot Noir, yet produce both Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc.  The SB grapes come from Marlborough, NZ's most famous SB producing region. 

So what did I drink, you ask!?

We started with the 2011 Tarras Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.  Pretty punchy at 13%, it was very aromatice with tropical fruit exploding into your nose.  I really enjoyed this wine because it had a lot of character.  Some Sauv Bs tend to bore or just have way too much acid, but not this one.

Then we moved over to the Pinot Noir.  The First we tried was 2009 from two different vineyards.  I enjoyed this a lot because it was totally up front and drinkable.  This is an outdoor picnic wine.

The next we we tasted, 2008 The Steppes, was from a terraced vineyard over a river.  It was very clean tasting with a crispness I could appreciate.

But my favorite, and I think most people's favorite, was the Kuru Kuru (named after great great great great grandma Johnston) 2008.  It definitly tasted the most Pinot-y.  It had more depth and a bit of spice which we were told was from the clay soils.

We finished off with the Canyon 2009.  This had a nice gamey nose and was the pefect pinot finish. 

Thanks Flying Winemaker and Hayden!! We look forward to your next visit to Hong Kong!

No comments:

Post a Comment