Spy Valley 2014 ‘Envoy’ Johnson and Outpost Pinot Noirs


The Spy Valley ‘Envoy’ wines have always been the more sophisticated and complex bottlings from this highly respected Marlborough producer. Viticulturist Adam McCone and the winemaking team led by Paul Bourgeois have taken the approach of allowing the Envoy wines to express the vineyard sites and nature of the fruit and varietal expression with the least winemaker inputs or with techniques that allow the wines to show their most balanced and natural character. I personally love tasting and drinking the wines, as they are distinctive in their differences and interesting personalities. Often they require some bottle age, or once poured, a little more time than usual in the glass to reveal the full character. They always reward some thought.

Pinot Noir is the significant red variety at Spy Valley. There are 45 ha planted in the ‘Johnson Vineyard’ in the Waihopi Valley, with plantings dating back to 1993. The company also has 11 ha, which were the original Eaton Family plantings, a hillside vineyard, the vines planted in 2002. Here, I review two 2014 ‘Envoy’ Pinot Noirs, one from 1 ha (10 rows) of the 5.5 ha ‘F Block’ of the ‘Johnson Vineyard’, and the other from 1 ha, the mid-slope section of ‘Outpost Vineyard’. The comparison of the two wines is fascinating, demonstrating the differences in clonal material and site, but also the similarities as in winemaking technique in drawing out and showing the best expression of the wines that the fruit can deliver. www.spyvalleywine.co.nz


  • Spy Valley ‘Envoy’ ‘Johnson Vineyard’ Waihopi Valley Marlborough Pinot Noir 2014
  • Spy Valley ‘Envoy’ ‘Outpost Vineyard’ Omaka Valley Marlborough Pinot Noir 2014

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