THE VINEYARD AND VINES
The vineyard is located within the Waipara Valley of North Canterbury, on free draining, north facing terraces. It benefits from being in the lee of the Teviotdale Range, giving maximum protection from the Pacific’s easterly breezes and thus creating a unique mesoclimate. The vines are over 30 years old, with a large proportion planted on their own roots. The soil is free draining and of low fertility, resulting in naturally reduced vine vigour. This produces low yields of optimally ripened, high quality, flavourful grapes, which fully express the qualities of this unique terroir. The vineyard has warm days, but the nights are amongst the coolest in the Waipara Valley, drawing out the ripening period of the grapes, while still retaining good natural acidity.
Warm and settled weather during flowering led to a very large initial set. Fruit thinning was then undertaken to bring the crop back to the desired level. A perfect summer followed by a warm dry autumn enabled the subsequent grapes to be harvested with excellent flavour development and physiological ripeness.
THE HARVEST AND WINEMAKING
Maestro is part of our reserve series and represents the very best of our Bordeaux fruit. As with all our reserves, this celebrated claret style wine is only made in exceptional years. After being picked in April, the grapes began fermentation naturally in stainless steel tanks. During this process the juice was regularly drained and sprayed back over the cap of floating grape skins (rather than plunging), to ensure a perfect tannin balance was extracted from the fruit. The wine was then gently pressed off and put into French oak barriques (50% new). The following summer, when the weather warmed, it underwent a natural malo-lactic (secondary) fermentation. After maturing in oak for 2 years, a selection from the best barrels was carefully blended to produce the most balanced yet complex wine possible. The finished product is a blend of approximately 60% Merlot, 20% Cabernet, and 20% Malbec.
It is dark purple and inky in appearance. Stacked in layers are a plethora of both dark fruit and savoury aromas. Blackcurrent, dark plum and cassis are straddled with earthy notes of mushroom, leather, black olive and woodsmoke. Plump and succulent in the mouth, yet with satisfying concentration and ripe tannins that add structure and complexity. Bound together with a core of refreshing acidity that balances the wine perfectly and prolongs its finish. While ready to drink on release, this wine will reward careful cellaring for many years to come.