Esk Valley The Terraces Red Blend 2014 Front Label
Esk Valley The Terraces Red Blend 2014 Front LabelEsk Valley The Terraces Red Blend 2014  Front Bottle Shot

Esk Valley The Terraces Red Blend 2014

  • RP94
  • JS93
750ML / 14.5% ABV
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750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The wine is deeply colored and full of primary black fruits, including cherry and blackberry. As a young wine, French oak notes complement the fruit, but with time, complexity and vineyard nuances will predominate.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Deep, dark and intense, there are 330 cases of the 2014 Heipipi The Terraces Malbec Merlot Cabernet Franc. Plummy and rich, it's full-bodied, with velvety tannins that give a sense of plushness in the mouth. Traces of oak remain, hinting at cedar and vanilla, but what impresses is the depth and power of the fruit, which is expressed without any sense of jamminess or surmaturité. Give it a couple of years in the cellar, and drink it over the next decade.
Rating: 94+
JS 93
James Suckling
This harnesses the magic violety fragrance that merlot can achieve in this part of New Zealand to good effect and is backed with blueberry aromas and flavors. The tannins are fine and even. A class act from start to finish.
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Esk Valley

Esk Valley

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Esk Valley, New Zealand
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The Esk Valley winery is situated in the north of New Zealand's picturesque Hawkes Bay. The winery sources fruit from Hawkes Bay, including the world-renowned Gimblett Gravels – one of New Zealand’s most distinctive wine regions – as well as Marlborough. Both regions consistently produce grapes of an extremely high quality. Esk Valley is famous for its premium cult wine "The Terraces", which is only released those years when the terraced vines on the banks above the winery produce an exceptional vintage. You don’t have to dig deep to get the picture – the soil; uniquely stratified layers of shell, hard clay and volcanic ash are clearly visible in the terraced hillside. The sheltered north-facing slopes possess a mild micro-climate well-suited for the production of high-quality grapes. These stunning vineyards, with a breathtaking backdrop of the Pacific Ocean, can be viewed from the cellar door.

Esk Valley is a boutique winery, but it is unique in that many of the techniques used to craft its award-winning wines are dictated by the winery itself. The old concrete vats, the layout of the buildings, and the absence of modern technology mean the people at Esk Valley have had to make wine in a simple, honest, hands-on way. Winemaker Gordon Russell has established himself as one of New Zealand's most recognized winemaking personalities with his passionate approach to winemaking, and the enormous success he has achieved with his wines in tastings and competitions. Gordon believes that the concept of 'texture' in a wine is as important as the aromas and flavors of the wine. By 'texture' he means the balance and harmony of the wine, together with complexity and palate interest. Hand-plunging with wooden plungers is one of the manual techniques he employs in his pursuit of texture – a method used only by a fraction of New Zealand wineries. Old-school winemaking results in wines with old-world flavor profiles – and with a suave, perfumed Sauvignon Blanc, a very Burgundian Chardonnay and a very Bordeaux-like red blend, Esk Valley offers something different than many other New Zealand wineries.

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Hawkes Bay Wine

New Zealand

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An eclectic region on the east coast of the North Island, Hawkes Bay extends from wide, fertile, coastal plains, inland, to the coast range, whose peaks reach as high as 5,300 feet. While the flatter areas were historically more popular because they are easier to cultivate, their alluvial soils can be too fertile for vines. In the late 20th century, the drive for quality led growers to the hills where soils are free-draining, limestone-rich and more suited to producing high quality wines.

Over the passing of time, the old Ngaruroro River laid down deep, gravelly beds, which were subsequently exposed after a huge flood in the 1860’s. In the 1980s growers identified this stretch, which continues for approximately 800 ha, and named it the Gimblett Gravels. The zone has proven to be ideal for the production of excellent red wines, particularly Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah.

Today the area takes well-earned recognition for its Bordeaux blends and other reds. Expressive of intense stewed red and black berry with gentle herbaceous characters, Gimblett Gravels wines are suggestive of their cool climate origin, and on par with other top-notch Bordeaux blends around the globe.

Chardonnay is the top white grape in Hawkes Bay, making elegant wines, strong in stone fruit character. Sauvignon blanc comes in close behind, notable for its tropical, fruit forward qualities.

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, the best of these are densely hued, fragrant, full of fruit and boast a structure that begs for cellar time. Somm Secret—Blends from Bordeaux are generally earthier compared to those from the New World, which tend to be fruit-dominant.

SWS924473_2014 Item# 229851

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