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Greywacke Pinot Gris 2011

Pinot Gris/Grigio from Marlborough, New Zealand
  • WE92
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Winemaker Notes

Fruit from the Brancott Valley is wild yeast fermented in older oak to produce a rich, opulent rendition of New Zealand Pinot Gris. Concentrated aromatics of poached pear, quince and baking spices are followed by a palate of luscious stone fruit and mineral undertones.

Critical Acclaim

WE 92
Wine Enthusiast

Struck flint and slightly smoky aromas give way to flavors of honeyed peaches and toasted nuts—not full on, like a Chardonnay might be, but restrained yet lush at the same time. In only a few years, this has quickly become one of New Zealand’s best Pinot Gris.

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Greywacke

Greywacke

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Greywacke, , New Zealand
Greywacke
The Greywacke portfolio is based on the Marlborough region's signature varieties, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. The Sauvignon Blanc is crafted in two distinctive styles: classically pure Marlborough Sauvignon, and an alternative wild yeast-fermented, oak-aged Sauvignon. In addition, Kevin indulges his creative drive with small parcels of Chardonnay, along with aromatic varieties Pinot Gris and Riesling. When the season graces this idyllic region with ideal conditions, limited releases of late harvest wines from the aromatic varieties are produced.

Alexander Valley

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A source of Sonoma Cabernet that can rival its Napa Valley neighbors...

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A source of Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon that can rival its Napa Valley neighbors, the Alexander Valley is the hottest AVA in the county. This large and heavily planted appellation is only 25 miles from the coast, but it is relatively free of fog due to the sheltering effects of the mountain ranges in between. However, the Russian River, which runs through the valley, creates cool-climate pockets and soft, alluvial soil ideal for grape-growing.

In addition to Cabernet Sauvignon, which makes up over 50% of plantings, Merlot and other Bordeaux varieties as well as Zinfandel thrive here, all of which take on a bold and voluptuous personality. Ample, fleshy Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc dominate white wine production. Some old-vine plantings of Grenache have been discovered here, and more recent experiments with Sangiovese and Barbera show great promise.

Rhône Blends

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of spice...

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of spice, Rhône red blends originated in France’s Southern Rhône valley and have become popular in Priorat, Washington, South Australia, and California’s Central Coast. In the Rhône itself, 19 grape varieties are permitted for use, but many of these blends, are based on Grenache and supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre, earning the nickname “GSM blends.” Côtes du Rhône and Châteauneuf-du-Pape are perhaps the best-known outposts for these wines. Other varieties that may be found in Rhône blends include Carignan, Cinsault, and Counoise.

In the Glass

The taste profile of a Rhône blend will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache, which often forms the base of these blends, is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit, a plush texture, and often high levels of alcohol. Syrah supplies darker fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy, and meaty notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume as well as body, tannin, and a healthy dose of color. New World examples will lie further along the fruit-forward end of the spectrum, while those from the Old World taste and smell much earthier, often with a “barnyard” character that is attractive to many fans of these wines.

Perfect Pairings

Rhône red blends typically make for very food-friendly wines. Depending on the weight and alcohol level, these can work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes—they play equally well with beef, pork, duck, lamb, or game. With their high acidity, these wines are best-matched with salty or fatty foods, and can handle the acidity of tomato sauce in pizza or pasta. Braised beef cheeks, grilled lamb sausages, or roasted squab are all fine pairings.

Sommelier Secret

Some regions like to put their own local spin on the Rhône red blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin, and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or even Tempranillo make an appearance.

YNG672929_2011 Item# 126660

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