Simon and Vanessa Barker
Muritai is located a half mile from the sea in one of the windiest and driest spots in Marlborough. Whilst bud-break is 7-10 days earlier here because of the proximity of a relatively warm sea in the spring, in the summer the breeze is stronger in the Awatere than elsewhere in Marlborough. And it’s strongest where we are, close to the sea. More wind makes our vines less prone to disease, reducing the need for treatments. Wind also reduces temperature, lowering yields and delaying maturity so the grapes see more of the cooler fall evenings. The cool evenings mean larger diurnal temperature changes as well as longer hang times, both of which help develop the aromas and flavors that give our wines their unique intensity.
The soil at Muritai overlays gravel and clay. It’s the right kind of almost stone free clay that holds water, making it available to the vine’s root system in our drier micro-climate. The depth of the underlying clay and its water content vary from one end of the vineyard to the other, giving us the variable growing conditions we were seeking.
97% of the wine is fermented in stainless steel, 3% is fermented in older oak barrels to add aroma, weight, and texture. Gentle fining before bottling to round out the structure from the oak fermentation.
Spicy, herby character that somehow manages to remain floral despite the intensity. Rich and even secondary (biscuity) aromas overlay all. Bright, zesty, floral, flavors are balanced by a richness of super ripe citrus. The mid palate is at once weighty but light, rich but fresh.