A hedonistic wine. Aromas of citrus zest, orange blossom honey and marmalade are poised against a luscious and pronounced sweetness on the palate which persists thanks to a backbone of enlivening acidity.
- Alcohol (ABV): 9.5 %
- Acidity: 9.80 g/l
- Residual sugar: 168.00 g/l
- pH: 3.40
From a single vineyard in the Rapaura sub-region of the Wairau Valley, this small block of Riesling is run meticulously by the Couper family. Cane-pruned and VSP trained, the vineyard was brilliantly situated to deliver perfect noble rot conditions. The fruit was carefully hand-picked it at the very end of vintage on the 30th April 2018.
A hot summer accelerated ripening across all varieties, but the relatively wet late summer conditions provided an ideal environment for the onset of noble rot. The botrytis infection was rapid throughout the region and was in a form called ‘slip-skin’. This resulted in a very even infection across the vineyard with very little sporulation or grey rot. We were able to obtain excellent concentration and the entire parcel was nearly 100% infected with botrytis.
The grapes were selectively hand-harvested in the vineyard and the fruit was gently whole-bunch pressed with the juice returned to the skins for an overnight maceration to soak up further flavour, sugars and acidity. Upon pressing again the juice was settled naturally and fermented with selected yeast strains in a small stainless steel tank. With minimal intervention throughout, the wine naturally ceased fermentation at around 9.5% alcohol. The wine was racked to French oak puncheons where it spent six months on light lees, followed by gentle filtration before being bottled on 28th November 2018.
Matt Thomson has worked over fifty vintages in numerous wine regions around the world, and has worked with David Gleave since 1994. He is involved with many of the wines in our portfolio, primarily as a consultant. "Blank Canvas represents my story as a winemaker. It is an endeavour that is entirely my own expression of winemaking, is from my own funding, and is exclusively my risk." The 'Blank Canvas' is the vineyard and the variety, the winery the brush and palette (no pun intended) at the winemaker's disposal, all the while defined by the scientific grounding Matt laid at university and has built upon over the past 20-odd years. With partner Sophie Parker-Thomson, the aim is to break some rules with the Blank Canvas wines, but they feel in order to break the rules, you need to know them. This is what sets the Blank Canvas wines apart.