|"Let there be sauvignon..."|
A certain incident at a wedding in Cana should be proof enough. But here's even more evidence - most NZ wine regions will be delivering bumper crops this autumn.
Marlborough's harvesting will start with sparkling wine grapes about mid-March. The harvest of sauvignon blanc, the region's dominant grape, will begin about a fortnight later.
Wine Marlborough general manager Marcus Pickens describes the pending bounty as "...looking like an absolute belter", adding that a good sauvignon harvest was crucial to NZ's economy, export earnings and global wine reputation. "It really is our biggest and most important grape variety by a long shot."
He says there isn't enough wine to meet demand in many local markets, and expects some pressure on releasing wines into the market from July.
A damn good summer in most places means most of NZ will start the grape harvest earlier than last year. The exception is NZ's pinot noir capital, Central Otago. Prez of the local Winegrowers Association James Dicey says a cool spring and early summer will mean a late March/early April start to picking the pinot noir grapes. Vineyards had recovered from November frosts and other cold spells in early summer but, even so, Central pinot noir is likely to be 5-10% down on last year. Vintage 2013 pinot noir will hit shops next year or 2015, depending on quality.
Meanwhile, consumers love the 2010 wines. That vintage is renowned as an exceptional vintage, while 2011 is slightly more of an elegant perfumed vintage. Prayers were answered...
|vineyard in Lowburn Valley, Central Otago|