Sunday, May 31, 2009

Just a few to go, then assembly

Have not had a lot to report lately, as all is moving along quietly in the winery.

The ferments are all finished and just a few to press off then we can turn our mind to assembly of the 2008 reds. These have been in barrel for 12 months, and it’s time to decide which of the barrels will be used in which wine. It is a tiring process (over 200 barrels to taste) but vital in ensuring when the wine finally gets into bottle it is of a quality representative of each of our labels. One has to be ruthless in deciding if a barrel is good enough for our top wine. If not it needs to be declassified to one of the regional blends.

This is a process that has significant economic consequences as well. If one decides a barrel of (say) Blue Rock Pinot is not quite good enough for that label, and we use it in the Martinborough Pinot Noir blend, it means we have cut the value of that barrel by 35% (due to the latter wine selling for much less than the Blue Rock).

We have had a couple of weeks of terrible weather and are happy to be working inside. These shots show the Dry River in flood, and if you look at the trees, you can see the wind is pretty strong too. There is a reason it is called the Dry River, as most of the year it does not run. When it does though it can be quite spectacular