Will 2013 Produce The Finest New Zealand Wines?
The grapes are all harvested and across the nation, the crushers and presses have been washed down for the yr. The fermenting grape-juice is effervescent away in tanks and barrels and it will not be lengthy earlier than the primary tasting notes and wine critiques begin trickling in. What can we anticipate from the much-hyped 2013 classic? Put merely, among the greatest New Zealand wines ever. New Zealand was actually due for a superb one. Because of an Indian summer season, 2010 yielded wines of a typically excessive normal, however 2011 and 2012 had been each blended baggage by way of high quality, displaying marked regional variation. This yr, the climate in spring and summer season proved notably sunny and dry, particularly within the North Island. ‘The nice and cozy, dry summer season of 2013 has been completely excellent for rising and ripening grapes,’ enthused New Zealand Winegrowers. The distinctive climate wore on into autumn. For the primary time anybody might recall, by mid March the whole North Island was formally affected by drought. Nonetheless, quickly after the drought started to calm down its grip and by mid April it was largely over. In a number of areas, the weekend of 20-21 April introduced torrential rain.
Evaluating 2013 with 2012, John Clarke, deputy chair of New Zealand Winegrowers, was extremely enthusiastic. ‘Grapes are coming off in pristine situation, with nice flavour,’ he declared in mid March. ‘It is gone from one excessive to the opposite. Final yr we had no summer season, it rained, it was humid.’ In Marlborough, the place two-thirds of the vines are planted, the prospects are for thrilling wines. Above-average rainfall in January averted drought, and clear skies at evening meant 2013, regardless of a procession of heat, sunny days, was not a sizzling rising season. Throughout spring and summer season, the common temperature within the area was 15.3°C, barely above the long-term common of 15.1°C. Fromm Vineyard, in Marlborough, believes 2013 ‘could possibly be one of the best classic we have ever finished. All the weather are there. We have had sizzling days and funky nights, which helped the fruit retain its acidity. We have had sufficient rain when it was wanted, nevertheless it’s been dry sufficient so there isn’t any illness strain [to pick].’ Winemakers within the second-largest area, Hawke’s Bay, are additionally fired up. ’13 seems to be like it might be a fortunate quantity for Hawke’s Bay,’ enthused Chris Scott. The senior winemaker at Church Street reported ‘a near-perfect rising season’ and ‘among the nicest hand-harvested chardonnay fruit we now have ever seen…’ Trinity Hill reported ‘highlights particularly are chardonnay and syrah.’ It is nonetheless early days, however you possibly can sit up for some terrific New Zealand wines, loads of constructive tasting notes and critiques, and a few nice wine buys from 2013.