Winemaker Tasting with Dave Clouston

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6b15e20836ed1e2731b8b4faac93d68e_xlDave Clouston is the owner and winemaker of the Two Rivers and Black Cottage vineyards located in the heart of Marlborough, and more specifically, the Wairau and Awatere valleys.

Dave himself grew up in Marlborough and spent his youth there where his family has farmed for five generations. Energetic, and talented, David’s experience – garnered over 25 vintages worldwide in countries such as Chile, Spain, the USA, France and Australia – is the driving force behind his wines.

The wines themselves are made from combining select parcels of fruit with modern and alternative winemaking techniques with a heavy focus on sustainability – the philosophy being that we are not separate from the land but in a relationship with it.

He makes some great Sauvignon Blanc, not the plonk that populates the supermarket shelves, but elegant wines that reflect the terroir.  He also makes some stunning Pinot Noir (both red and rosé), and Pinot Gris.

We’re delighted to have Dave back with us this September tasting through a selection of his wines.

Black Cottage & Two Rivers Tasting with winemaker Dave Clouston, Friday 28th Sept. 5pm-7pm

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2017 Wine Harvest, a difficult year.

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Healthy chardonnay grapes, left, and sunburned ones. Photographer: Elin McCoy/Bloomberg

January is as good a time as ever to deliver bad news, and many European countries are taking time adding up the tallies of the previous year’s grape harvest and reporting yield’s down as much as 25%. Adverse climatic conditions in 2017, including heavy hailstorms and hard frosts in the spring as well as drought in the summer, caused considerable damage to vineyards all over Europe. The result, most of the wine-growing regions in Europe are had a very low harvest for 2017.

Italian wine body Assoenologi estimated that Italy would see one of its smallest wine harvests for 60 years in 2017, down by 25% on last year, that’s a reduction of roughly 5.5 billion bottles. Things are not much better in France where they have had the worst harvest since 1945, according to France AgriMer, an agency that works with both the industry and government. Wine production to fall by 18% on 2016 after spring frosts ravage vines, but hot summer could deliver top vintages – meaning price increases across the board for low yields but higher quality fruit.

The outlook in Europe’s other large producer is not much better with Spain’s output dropping down 20% from 2016, and in Germany the estimated vintage is down 12%. All in all 2017 proved to be a difficult year in Europe.

Despite wild fires in both California and Oregon the north American harvest is likely to be similar to last year. South Africa saw very small increases in yields, about 1.4%.  In South America, both sides of the Andes were affected to varying degrees by the shift from the wetter El Niño  weather system to the drier conditions associated with La Niña weather system. In Mendoza, Argentina yields were down about 30 percent compared to normal. And in Chile yields were down about 22% due to drought and forest fires. New Zealand also experienced a drop in yeilds by about 9%. Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand winegrowers, attributed the smaller harvest of 2017 to wet weather over the summer season. Australia was the only country to undergo modest yield increases at roughly 5% despite a tricky vintage.

The conclusion is that unfortunately the price of your favourite wines will probably increase this year a wineries increase excellar prices to try to cover lower quantities produced.

 

 

 

Riesling Tasting

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SoR Who 2013

As part of our Summer of Riesling promotion we will be hosting an informal Rielsing tasting in the shop. We will have every style of Riesling from bone dry to super sweet open for tasting. The tasting is Friday 7th July between 5pm-7pm in our shop on Middle Street.

Call in and try some of our favouite summer whites.

Wind beneath my wings

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wingspanOne of the holy grails of the wine trade – Pinot Noir at the right price that actually tastes like Pinot Noir…amazing! Add the fact that it’s from New Zealand and it becomes all the more amazing!! An old friend of ours, Wingspan are based in Nelson, west of Marlborough, farming their vineyards sustainably in this, the warmest region of NZ.

The nose is full of soft red fruits with spicy tones, the palate is a real surprise for a wine at this level: dark berry fruits with real grip, structure and acidity. Hedgerow fruits lie alongside spicy raspberry and classic Pinot tang with a clean, proper finish. Pair with some tasty spicy Chinese duck dishes, or spiced crusted beef brisket.