A couple of months ago, we had the fortune to visit one of our favorite New Zealand wineries, Greywacke. We have been fans of Greywacke Sauvignon Blancs for years, so a visit to their headquarters highlighted our trip. We learned about their storied history, and tasted five excellent wines in their portfolio. These wines are the focus of this second post in a two-part series.
Part 1 delved into Greywacke’s story, and its owner and talented winemaker, Kevin Judd. Understandably, harvest kept Kevin busy during our visit. Instead, his knowledgeable and entertaining wife and co-owner, Kimberley, poured five stellar wines for us. We recommend them all.
We have been fans of Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc for years, because this crisp, refreshing wine is readily available in the U.S. More recently, we’ve also become fans of Greywacke Wild Sauvignon, which appeals to our funky palates.
So when we travelled to New Zealand a couple of months ago, a visit to Greywacke was at the top of our list. What a treat.
We spent a few hours at the Greywacke headquarters in Marlborough, learned the winery’s captivating story, and tasted many wines. This is part one of a two-part series, and focuses on the story of Greywacke. Part two features the five wines we tasted in Greywacke’s portfolio.
Raise your hand if you knew that New Zealand’s Pinot Noir is right up there with its Sauvignon Blanc in terms of taste and value.
Good for you, because we didn’t!
Located at the northeast corner of New Zealand’s South Island, Marlborough is known internationally for its Sauv Blancs. But the region is also becoming popular for Pinot Noir.
We recently discovered this when we participated in a Nov. 4 Twitter tasting of two Villa Maria Pinot Noirs from Marlborough. Our main takeaway: Either one of these wines would pair very well with turkey and an assortment of sides during a Thanksgiving feast.
Villa Maria 2014 Private Bin Pinot Noir ($17) This good-value Pinot Noir is very approachable and food-friendly, displaying the hallmarks of the region — the aromas of sweet red cherry and berries. This medium-bodied wine is ruby red, with a juicy palate of red berries, cinnamon and herbs. In addition to pairing well with turkey, this Pinot will complement red meats, smoked salmon or aged cheddar throughout the year.
Villa Maria 2013 Cellar Selection Pinot Noir ($25.00) Also from Marlborough vineyards, this Cellar Selection has subtle smoky aromas along with red cherries on the nose, and red berry, black cherry and plum flavors on the palate. We preferred this Pinot for its silky mouthfeel, spice and earthiness, and plan to enjoy it during our family’s Thanksgiving extravaganza. Of note, it will also pair well with many traditional sides, including beet salad. Other fall and winter meals, such as lamb or wild game, will go nicely with this wine too.
Villa Maria has been a family-owned winery since 1961. In the 1990s, Villa Maria pioneered sustainable viticulture and winemaking in New Zealand, and became the country’s first wine company to declare the winery “a cork-free zone.” Villa Maria has used screw caps from the 2001 vintage onward.
There is a Washington state connection — Villa Maria wines are imported by Ste. Michelle Wine Estates.
Thank you to Villa Maria and Ste. Michelle Wine Estates for inviting us to the Twitter chat and providing samples to taste.