MARLBOROUGH”S 2023 HARVEST – GROWING CONDITIONS
A wet spring kicked off lush growth in the vines this year. This made for healthy canopies but meant growers had to stay alert to avoid disease. We thought we were on the home straight after some sunny weather over Christmas, and our thoughts started turning towards vintage. However, in late January a series of torrential storms and flooding crashed through NZ’s North Island. Our hearts went out to friends and family in Auckland, Hawkes Bay and Gisborne, were many homes and properties were damaged. We were, however, thankful that the storms did not reach Marlborough.
We watched the forecast and the skies anxiously, but, miraculously, Marlborough was spared the worst of the weather. Tucked away in the lee of the Kaikoura Mountains and the Richmond Ranges, we were sheltered from the storms. Marlborough weather remained relatively settled and on track for vintage. The vineyards were spared and grapes were able to slowly ripen in peace.
Autumn weather leading into harvest was settled, as usual in Marlborough, with still clear days, crisp mornings and blue skies. It was the sort of weather that has George eyeing up his plane or his mountain bike.
When vintage finally rolled around, a little later than previous years, the grapes were in great condition. The slightly later, slower harvest allowed fantastic flavours to develop. Consequently the 2023 vintage is looking like one of Marlborough’s strongest for years.
MARLBOROUGH”S 2023 HARVEST – THE FINISHED WINES
Like 2022, this was a year where the Awatere Valley performed strongly and fruit from this sub-region contributes to over 50% of The Better Half Sauvignon Blanc. The flavours are ripe and intense, with juicy acidity and a long finish.
Pinot Noir is still maturing in barrel but this variety’s grapes were small and full of flavour. Although it’s still early, the initial signs are of concentrated, intense wines wines.
We can’t wait to pour you a glass.