2016 Millton Te Arai Chenin Blanc
With aromas of fresh lime zest, white peach and fragrant gardenias, flavours of fine wool and bush honey are enhanced by quince and ripe bouche pear aromas with a waxy tingling aftertaste. The balance of acidity with subtle sweetness makes an approachable wine at a young age and showing a huge potential for ageing.
The Te Arai vineyard is five kilometres from the sea. "Te Arai" roughly translates to “the place where you pause before going on towards the land of eternal sunshine.” Quite appropriate for this wine, I thought. This maritime proximity underlies the wine’s unique South Pacific style. The silt soils give fragrance while the occasional incidence of botrytis, generated by the autumnal mists from the Te Arai stream, give complex texture, body and a sense of sweetness to the wine. In the Loire Valley of France, Chenin Blanc produces powerful wines of a similar character, which we refer to as our touchstone.
Notes from the Winemaker:
Over the years our determination to produce one of the world’s best wines from this variety is a seasonal challenge and a bottled fantasy. Up to four selections are made in the vineyard when we hand harvest the grapes. On the crush pad the stems are discarded as these grapes give up their juice very easily during the long slow press cycle. The juice is collected together and allowed to settle for only a short time as we need to keep the fine sediments, for it is here that all the nutrients lie which satisfy a well behaved fermentation. The fermentation and maturation take place in demi-muids (large 600 litre oak barrels) and stainless steel tanks. The wine matures in these vessels over time, and without the obtrusion of oak tannins, which would otherwise disrespect the subtle fruit aromas.
Serve about 12ºC and allow to breathe for as long as you think best. Ageing potential is at least 10 years from date of release.
• BioGro Certified Organic
• Demeter Certified Biodynamic
• Grown and bottled on the property
• Dry farmed and carbon negative
Total Acidity: 6.0g/l pH: 3.41
Alcohol: 11.5% Vol Residual Sugar: 7.4 g/l
Harvest Dates: 30th March 2016
Bottled: 20th December 2016
Released: 1st March 2017
Previous Vintage Tasting Notes: