McNaught & Walker
If you are looking for a superb single vineyard Sauvignon Blanc with all the character that New Zealand has to offer in a bottle, you've come to the right place. Served in two- and three-Michelin starred restaurants, McNaught & Walker's Sauvignon has explosive gooseberry fruit, asparagus and grassy notes, is bone dry yet rich and is utterly delicious.
Their winemaker is Jules Taylor (of Jules Taylor wines), who was internationally recognised as the New Zealand Producer of the Year for 2013 at the IWSC awards in London in November of that year. She also buys some of the McNaught & Walker grapes for her own wine production, which is a further endorsement of the quality of fruit. Click here to read more about Jules' achievement.
McNaught & Walker’s Vineyard is situated on an elevated (200m) site in the Awatere Valley sub region of Marlborough on New Zealand’s South Island. Here, the vines grow on a river terrace formed by glacial action and overlaid with glacial outwash gravels and silts, also loessal clay, the presence of which contributes considerably to the structure of the wine.
The primary ethos at McNaught & Walker is to retain the natural balance of the vines, allowing them to express the terroir that they are grown on. It is rare to find different types of soil at such close proximity, giving so much character from a Single Vineyard, without the need to blend.
In the vineyards, the use of chemicals is kept to a minimum. Natural seaweed fertiliser is applied through the irrigation system and inter row grasses are grown and allowed to flower and seed during the summer months, as are clovers. In the autumn and spring months, sheep graze the vineyard which help to maintain the cover crops but also benefits the soil with natural fertilizer. Crop and vigour are managed with pruning and shoot thinning and the vines are trained with vertical shoot positioning to create an open canopy without excessive fruit exposure to the sun. Irrigation is employed on a supplementary basis as the region is prone to drought.
The harvest is carried out by machine, with the exception of a portion of the vineyard that is hand harvested for barrel ferment.
During the month prior to harvest the McNaught & Walker fruit is sampled for analysis and for flavour development. Once the decision to harvest is made the whole vineyard is picked with the exception of the hand harvested vines, which are usually picked within a day or so of the main crop.
At the winery, the machine harvested fruit is de-stemmed and run directly through the press to stainless steel tanks where the wine undergoes fermentation at a controlled 10 degrees. Post ferment the wine is settled and racked to remove any solids. The hand pick component, about 7 percent of the finished wine, is whole bunch pressed and taken to barrel and fermented with natural yeast. Post ferment the wine is left on its lees and malolactic fermentation occurs.
The components are blended prior to bottling. The Barrel component adds texture to the wine and compliments the natural flavours from the vineyard.
For more information on McNaught & Walker, visit www.mcnaughtwalker.com