Organically certified Giesen Sauvignon Blancs
Old vines, hand harvested grapes and organic certification are buzzwords in wine circles, especially at this time of year when people are likely to dig a little deeper than usual for a bottle or a case of their favourite wine. But how do these words translate into actual taste in wine?
What makes these wines better
It can be tricky explaining how hand harvested grapes can and do make an actual difference to the taste of wine, let alone old vines or, even more controversially, organic certification.
All of these factors sound like they have a ring of quality about them but how do they actually make wine better?
Two Sauvignon Blancs whose makers put their money where their mouths are come from the quality driven Giesen brothers; Marcel, Theo and Alex.
Marcel is standing next to a German fuder oak barrel in the picture in this blog, which is used to ferment and mature their top wines in. The oak pick up is less in these large, 1000 litre fuder oak barrels because the contact area with the wine is less, due to the large volume in the barrels. This means the wines fermented or matured in these barrels tend to taste less oak driven. Fuder barrels also have thicker staves, which means fermentation temperatures tend to be warmer.
"We find the fruit characters gain greater depth and complexity due to the warmer temperatures during fermentation in fuder," says Marcel Giesen.
And then there's the fact that he and his winemaking team use only their best quality grapes to make wine in fuder, which adds another layer of quality.
Two wines worth trying
We have two full bodied, dry whites on special this month, both of which highlight the high quality of winemaking in fuder barrels - and also show Sauvignon in a special light.
The wines are...
2013 Giesen Dillons Point The Fuder Special $36.99 (RRP $39.99)
2014 Giesen Matthew’s Lane Special $36.99(RRP $39.99)
Both are made from hand harvested grapes grown on organically certified vineyards and fermented in 1000 litre German oak fuder barrels.
Dillon’s Point is one of the oldest vineyards in Marlborough. It was planted on the east of Opawa Stream in 1991 and is now certified organic.
Matthew’s Lane Vineyards is 12 kilometres from the coast on light free draining soil and has supplied Marlborough vine nurseries with over one million vine cuttings. It is also home to the grapes that go into Giesen’s premium The August 1888 Sauvignon Blanc, named after the grandfather of Marcel, Theo and Alex, founders of Giesen Estate.
Buy any two bottles of 2013 Giesen Dillons Point The Fuder or 2014 Giesen Matthew’s Lane Sauvignon Blanc - and receive a gift pack of Riedel aromatic white wine glasses - free.
Each bottle is on special till Xmas for $36.99 (RRP $39.99)