Cloudy Bay defies NZ shortage to release two new Sauvignon Blancs
Despite confirmed shortages of Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand, Cloudy Bay will launch two new expressions of the variety – Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2021 and Te Koko 2019 – globally this month.
Cloudy Bay, LVHM’s outpost in New Zealand, is gearing up to release two white wines this month.
The Te Koko 2019 is the first release from this range in two years. Made using wild yeasts and barrel fermentation, this Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is said to be produced in an “alternative style” and only appears when the fruit, harvested from just four vineyard parcels, has exceptional quality. As a result, the wine has an “aromatic and savoury profile with white peach, preserved citrus and honey aroma and citrus, rambutan, guava, warm pancakes notes on palate”.
For Sauvignon Blanc 2021, the vintage has been challenging as the yield in New Zealand is low but the fruit is intensely concentrated. It is a “fresh, vibrant wine with grapefruit, passionfruit, makrut lime leaf on nose and layers of lime, lemongrass and stone fruit flavours,” according to the brand.
John Flanagan, Cloudy Bay’s viticulturist, notes that 2019 and 2021 were remarkable vintages for Sauvignon Blanc.
“After not making Te Koko for the last two vintages, it was important that we were able to not only make a Te Koko 2019, but make it a great example of this wine.
“I can’t remember a vintage like this in my viticultural career — it had the lower yields of 2012 but far better ripening conditions. It had the low rainfall of 2015 and 2019, but not the same heat, which meant that fruit could achieve optimum flavour and acid/sugar balance on the vine.”
Yang Shen, estate director of Cloudy Bay, says: “Our commitment to seeking quality, not quantity, proves its value in both of these wines. Each wine is unique and reveals the skill and dedication of every member of the team, from the vineyards to the bottling line.”
The Sauvignon Blanc 2021 and Te Koko 2019 will be available in retail stores in Hong Kong and internationally.
Te Wahi, at the edge of the world
In 1985, David Hohnen created Cloudy Bay, the ultimate expression of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. Thirty years on, the Cloudy Bay team are keeping that adventurous spirit alive, journeying to one of the country’s most challenging winemaking regions: Central Otago.
Te Wahi is our limited release Pinot Noir from Central Otago. ‘Te Wahi’, is a Maori saying depicting, “the place”. Cloudy Bay believes that great Pinot Noir speaks of its origin and Te Wahi provides our encapsulation of the extremely southerly and continental Pinot Noir terroir of Central Otago.
“It takes time to understand ‘the place’,” says Viticulturist Jim White. “With our work in this region, we have come to learn the raw terroir and to hone our skills in expressing Central Otago Pinot Noir through the Cloudy Bay winemaking lens.” White adds that, “In exploring the greater landscape of New Zealand Pinot Noir, we will continue to hone our skills as viticulturists and winemakers.”
From vintage 2014, Te Wahi is a blend of grapes from two special vineyard sites, the silky and dense Calvert vineyard on Felton Road in Bannockburn and Cloudy Bay's newly acquired rugged structural Northburn vineyard on the East bank of Lake Dunstan. The Calvert vineyard consists of uniform silty loam soils, formed as part of an ancient lake bed with an altitude of 230m. The Northburn vineyard has mix of 3 soil types, all of glacial origin, across the sloping site at 220-275m of altitude. These complimentary sites share lineage and potential, as well as finesse and power. “The Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir program was initiated in the early 1990s with the goal of making the most expressive Pinot Noir wines from New Zealand,” comments Senior Winemaker, Tim Heath. “We are enjoying the adventure of exploring this exciting and relatively new wine region and have been very fortunate to secure two excellent and unique vineyards in Calvert and Northburn. These carefully selected and cultivated sites are the foundation of our own special Cloudy Bay expression of Central Otago Pinot Noir.”