Ostler Waitaki Valley Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Noir

16-Jun-2017
The Waitaki Valley vignoble has proven to be one of the more difficult, but also most exciting areas to grow wine in New Zealand. Inland from Oamaru on the limits of North Otago, the climate has a combination of the continental cool-climate with the influences of the eastern seaboard. The area experiences considerable extremes for viticulture. However, arguably the most important factor is the limestone-influenced soils of the north-facing vineyards. A number of high profile producers, such as Grant Taylor and John Forrest have shown the determination to persevere in the district, making high quality wine. But arguably the most successful is Ostler, the venture of Jim Jerram and his brother-in-law Jeff Sinnott, who planted their first grapes in 2002. A community of grapegrowers has sprung up around them to provide fruit to supplement their own ‘Clos Ostler’, these including the ‘Blue House’ vines of Rob and Pam Crosbie (now sold to Murray Turner), 12 km away, and the ‘Lakeside’ vines of Paul Sinnott, inland from Kurow at Lake Waitaki, this with less limestone. Jeff Sinnott is a veritable artist and thinker about wine, and his bottlings are always very interesting and usually high in quality. Here I review the new 2016 ‘Lakeside Vines’ Pinot Gris, 2015 ‘Grower Selection’ Gewurztraminer, 2015 ‘Audrey’s’ Pinot Gris, the 2015 ‘Blue House Vines’ Pinot Noir and 2015 ‘Caroline’s’ Pinot Noir. The Pinot Noirs in particular demonstrate the complex herb and mineral cool-spectrum complex amalgam that is unique to the Waitaki Valley. It can polarise opinions! www.ostlerwine.co.nz

FEATURED WINES IN THIS REVIEW

  • Ostler ‘Lakeside Vines’ Waitaki Valley Pinot Gris 2016
  • Ostler Waitaki Valley Gewurztraminer 2015
  • Ostler ‘Audrey’s’ Waitaki Valley Pinot Gris 2015
  • Ostler ‘Blue House Vines’ Waitaki Valley Pinot Noir 2015
  • Ostler ‘Caroline’s’ Waitaki Valley Pinot Noir 2015

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