Esk Valley

Esk Valley Tasting with Gordon Russell
 

Gordon Russell is one of New Zealand's leading winemakers and anytime spent with him is always educational. We visited the iconic Terraces vineyard, and standing on the top of the terraces in the vineyard, Gordon expanded on the developments he has made in the last two years. Initially Esk Valley was to be for Hawkes Bay wines, but world demand has meant that he has now started sourcing wines in Marlborough as well.
 
Sitting in the Terraces barrel cellar underneath the cellar door Gordon started his tasting.
 
 
Sauvignon Blanc 2011 Marlborough, typical up front greengage and passion fruit, almost peachy and along finish.
 
Verdelho 2011, produced from the Gimblett Gravels, a delicate floral nose with hints of tangerine, on the palate herby/campari character on the finish. Was delicious with the Stewart Island oysters we had for supper later.
 
Pinot Gris 2010, this wine is picked in three visits to the vineyard, an early pick for acidity, the main pick and then for texture and spice a late harvest pick, then the three components are blended together. Spicy pear on the nose, lovely texture in the mouth and a long spicy finish.
 
Chardonnay 2010 Winemakers Reserve, this wine just gets better with each vintage and is quite unique in that it dry farmed, no irrigation. Upfront ripe fruit flavours, all coated in a gentle vanilla coating, great intensity on the palate and long finish with great spice.
 
Merlot Cabernet Malbec 2009, blackberry fruit and open and appealing with great drinkability.
 
Pinot Noir 2011 Marlborough, literally just bottled, lifted ripe red and blackberry fruits, lovely mouth feel and great length on the finish.
 
Syrah 2010 Winemakers Reserve, ripe spicy blackberry fruit, quite ripe spicy dark fruits and a long finish.
 
Terraces 2009, this wine is now a full co ferment wine. ie the vineyard is all picked in one day and all the grapes go into one fermentor, a mix of Malbec, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. The nose was initially closed and not very giving, but after 10 minutes the fruit came bursting through. Spicy herby dark fruits, bold on the palate, with wild strawberry flavours and a long fruit finish.
 
Terraces 2002, this was served with dinner, more complex and secondary flavours just starting to show, the fruits were very similar, herby spicy with a mix of red and blackberry fruits and really long fruit finish.
 
 
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Posted on 22/03/2012
by Philip
in categories:
New Zealand 2012,

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