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Waipara Valley Winemaker Update 2013

The Waipara Hills handpicking team

Summer 2013 will be one which people will talk about in Canterbury for quite some time.  It was stable and warm and like everyone around the country we enjoyed BBQs and beach time with family and friends. 
Chardonnay started the harvest this year, with our hand picked clone 95 coming in on the 28th March. The flow of fruit from then was quite steady and the quality of the fruit was really encouraging from the start and promised great things to come. As the Sauvignon Blancs started to come in we saw that the flavour was really focused and vibrant, then as the Pinot Noir came in and the ferments got going, the colours and flavours emerged. It’s been really exciting to see the class of this year’s fruit unfold.
The last fruit to come in this year was Pinot Gris, which is the first time that one of these blocks has been harvested so late. It wasn't left to get super-ripe either, coming in at 24.2 brix, but the long ripening time has given these later picks some really intriguing depth and richness. The earlier picks from blocks that ripened faster have produced some lovely bright quince and pear characters. It’ll be fun to make the blends later in the year from the range of options we’ll have.  
The variety that currently has me the most excited is our Pinot Noir. H
aving warm, dry weather can give some varietals like Pinot Noir a greater depth and body. Richer and darker than in previous years, with great structure and fruit expression, I think the 2013 Waipara Pinots will turn some heads. I’m looking forward to following their progress in the cellar and later in the market over the coming few years.

All in all we have a lot to be happy with from the 2013 season and I look forward to showing these wines off in the near future.

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Waipara Hills

Waipara Hills, 780 Glasnevin Road
State Highway 1, Waipara, North Canterbury, New Zealand

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