Featured Reviews

Spy Valley and Envoy 2016 Pinot Gris

20 March,2017
The Spy Valley wines of Marlborough have an enviable record of providing high quality and classical regional as well as varietal character, and in doing so are very successful on the show circuit as well as in the market place. Spy Valley also has the luxury of being able to make small quantities of wines under the ‘Envoy’ label that allow the viticultural and winemaking teams considerable license in style. Viticulturist Adam McCone and winemaker Paul Bourgeois generally take a minimal interventionist approach and aim to preserve the natural character of the fruit from special parcels and sites, and represent what the vintage has provided in raw materials. The winemaking is natural and designed to allow the fruit be expressed and transformed into a wine of the best character and balance. Sometimes, the Envoy wines may seem extreme, but they are always of great interest. What is learnt from the making of the Envoy wines makes its way back into the production of the ‘estate’ wines. As a result, sophistication begets sophistication, and the more accessible ‘estate’ wines are subtly continuing to grow in complexity and stature. Here, I review the 2016 ‘estate’ Spy Valley Pinot Gris and ‘Envoy’ Pinot Gris. www.spyvalleywine.co.nz


Spy Valley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2016

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Marlborough

Bright, light straw-yellow colour with slight green hues, pale on the edge. The nose is softly full and voluminous with aroma of ripe yellow stonefruits and pears, with nuances of tropical fruits, exotic florals and honeysuckle. The aromatics are harmonious in presentation. Medium-dryish and medium-full bodied, the palate features rich and luscious flavours of ripe yellow stonefruits and pears, entwined with honeysuckle and nuances of exotic tropical fruits and florals. The palate is rounded and smooth-flowing, with very fine background phenolic textures and integrated, lacy acidity. The wine has energy, drive and linearity, and carries with freshness to a long, lingering finish of stonefruits, florals and honeysuckle. This is a rich and luscious medium-dry Pinot Gris with ripe stonefruit and honeysuckle flavours and exotic floral nuances on a smooth-flowing palate. Match with most white meat dishes over the next 3-4+ years. Clones 2/15, 2/21, KWV 7A and Lincoln BerrySmith, from the ‘Johnson’ Waihopai and ‘Meadowbank’ Taylor River sites, predominantly hand-picked and fermented with high solids, partially by indigenous yeasts, in wood and stainless-steel to 13.5% alc. and 14.9 g/L RS, the wine aged on lees. 18.5+/20 Mar 2017 RRP $25.00

Spy Valley ‘Envoy’ ‘Johnson Vineyard’ Waihopai Valley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2016

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Marlborough

Bright, light golden yellow colour with slight lemon-green hues. This has a full, broad and voluminous nose packed with opulently ripe yellow stonefruits, honey and notes of marmalade and musk. This has an integrated amalgam of well-ripened fruit and botrytised elements. Sweet to taste and medium-bodied, the palate is rich and succulent with opulent flavours of ripe tropical and stonefruits entwined with honey and subtle notes of marmalade, exotic, lifted florals and musk. The fruit forms a deep, rounded and solid heart, and a smooth, unctuous mouthfeel. The palate has presence and underlying power and drive, carrying the wine to a long and sustained, richly concentrated, exotic nuanced finish. This is a rich, succulent and opulent sweet Pinot Gris with ripe tropical fruit and honied flavours on an unctuous palate. Serve with Asian and Middle Eastern fare and light fruit desserts over the next 4-6 years. Clone 2/15 from the ‘C Block, Johnson Vineyard’, Waihopai, vines planted 1999, the fruit late-picked, with selection of raisined berries and noble rot bunches, fermented in seasoned oak to 13.0% alc. and 65 g/L RS. 19.0+/20 Mar 2017 RRP $32.00
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