Alluviale 2012 Hawke’s Bay Whites and Red
Committed to producing Bordeaux-styled wines from Hawke’s Bay, David Ramonteu and Kate Galloway operate Alluviale combining their traditional French and New World modern approaches to winemaking. The white wines, which range from dry to sweet, depending on the vintage conditions come from two vineyards in the cooler Mangatahi sub-region and the fruit for the red wine comes from two certified organic vineyards on Gimblett Road. The wines to date have shown the elegance and stylishness which have made the Bordeaux styles classics for the world.
The 2012 vintage has been acknowledged by David and Kate as a very challenging one because of the lack of sunshine and rain. However, their experience, careful and thoughtful decisions and work based on a holistic approach involving organics and biodynamics, combined with hand-picking and optical sorting, gave them pristine fruit for wines which they are proud of. I review these 2012 wines here. www.alluviale.com
FEATURED WINES IN THIS REVIEW
Alluviale ‘Blanc’ Hawke’s Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2012Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand - Hawke's BayReview Date : 26-Dec-2013Brilliant straw-yellow colour with slight golden hues, lighter on rim. The bouquet is elegantly proportioned with moderately concentrated aromas of limes, yellow and green stonefruits, along with subtle gooseberry, herb and nutty elements. The fruit is in the cooler spectrum with some savoury bean-like secondary notes. Dry to taste and medium-bodied, tightly bound grassy fruit flavours are entwined with fresh herbs and gooseberries and background bean nuances. The mouthfeel is fresh and brisk with racy, mouthwatering acidity, and a grainy textured core provides linearity. Some smokiness, and weight from the barrel work emerges, and is carried by the acidity to a sustained finish. This is a brisk, cool-spectrum, dry Sauvignon Blanc with a little development and some oak input. Serve with seafood and poultry over the next 2+ years. 98% Sauvignon and 2% Semillon from a site on the banks of the Ngaruroro River and a site in the Bridge Pa Triangle, partially fermented in oak to 13.0% alc. and <2 g/L RS, the wine partially barrel aged. 500 dozen made. 16.5/20 Dec 2013 RRP $24.00
Alluviale Gimblett Road Hawke’s Bay Merlot/Cabernet Sauvignon 2012Merlot from New Zealand - Hawke's BayReview Date : 26-Dec-2013Very dark, deep, near-impenetrable, purple-hued purple-red colour, very youthful in appearance. This has a very elegant nose with fresh, ripe, primary fruit aromas of redcurrants and red berry fruits, revealing plums, dark red florals, a little oak toast and earth, all harmoniously entwined. Medium-bodied and elegantly proportioned, bright and fresh, well-ripened dark red berry fruits and curranty elements feature, underlined by refined lacy acidity and tight, grainy tannin structure. The fruit purity and aromatic nature is beautifully poised and the extraction carries the palate to a very fine-featured, sustained finish. This is a beautifully fresh Merlot-based red with aromatic red curranty fruit and fine structure. Serve with roasted red meats or semi-hard cheeses over the next 6-8 years. 86% Merlot and 14% Cabernet Sauvignon from two certified organic sites on Gimblett Road, fermented to 13.0% alc., the wine aged without SO2 and aged 14 months in French oak barriques. 700 cases made. 18.5/20 Dec 2013 RRP $33.00
Alluviale ‘Tardif’ Hawke’s Bay Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc 2012Sweet Wine from New Zealand - Hawke's BayReview Date : 26-Dec-2013100% Sauvignon Blanc from two sites, one on the banks of the Ngaruroro River, the other in the Bridge Pa Triangle, the fruit undergoing raisining and fermented to 13.0% alc. and 70 g/L RS. Bright, moderately deep, light golden-yellow colour, paler on edge. The nose is soft and evenly full with aromas of ripe yellow and green stonefruits melded with tropical fruit and herb elements, and nutty, musky florals. Sweet to taste, the palate features an intriguing, restrained array of stonefruits, citrus marmalade and herbal flavours. The fruit is underlined by fine, grainy textures providing a balanced, drying mouthfeel. A suggestion of unctuousness is present, and brisk acidity with a firm line carry the flavours to a dry, textured finish of tropical fruits, honey and herbs. This is a Sauvignon Blanc-based sweet wine with rich fruit and herbal flavours and a balanced, textural mouthfeel. Serve with antipasto, baked fruit desserts and creamy cheeses over the next 4-5 years. 80 dozen made. 18.0/20 Dec 2013 RRP $30.00
Alluviale ‘Anobli’ Hawke’s Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2012Sweet Wine from New Zealand - Hawke's BayReview Date : 26-Dec-2013100% Sauvignon Blanc from two sites in the Mangatahi district, with botrytis infection, fermented to 11.5% alc. and 175 g/L RS. Full, deep golden yellow colour with some orange hues at heart. Full and voluminous aromas of ripe apricots and tropical fruits and complexed by concentrated notes of orange marmalade, honied botrytis, crystalised fruits and caramel. Very sweet to taste, the mouthfeel is rich, rounded, lusciously unctuous, exuding flavours of apricots, savoury citrus fruits, wild honey and marmalade. This is smooth-flowing with fine acid cut and fresh, lively poise to balance the richness and the sweetness. The flavours build with density and depth, and carry through to a lingering finish of crystalised fruits and toffee nuances. This is a rich and concentrated botrytised dessert wine with unctuous marmalade and toffee-like flavours. Match with baked desserts over the next 5-6 years. 75 dozen made. (375 ml) 18.5-/20 Dec 2013 RRP $40.00