Wild whole bunch fermented, unfined, unfiltered, hand bottled

In 1395 Phillippe the Bold banished the Gamay grape from Burgundy in favour of Pinot Noir. There are only 5 hectares of Gamay planted in the whole of New Zealand compared with 5000 hectares of Pinot Noir - so one could say that Phillippe's edict had a far reaching effect.

We have been fortunate to visit Beaujolais, the home of Gamay, and taste the best examples. Added to this Rod was lucky to share a bottle of 1929 Morgon - a bottle that clearly illustrates the potential of Gamy Noir to produce a truly great wine. Since then we have harboured a conviction that Gamay could be ideally suited to Hawke's Bay climate.

So it seemed like destiny when a friend let us know of this forgotten parcel of Gamay Noir on our doorstep. With a little persuasion, the vineyard owners allowed us to take over this parcel and sculpt the viticulture to meet our ambition for the resulting wine.

The hand picked bunches are tipped directly to the open topped fermenters to ferment. The slow release of juice and grape sugars to the yeast result in a long gradual fermentation. This is helped along by periodic foot-stomping to release more juice from the bunches. Six weeks later we drain and basket press the wine directly to oak barrels. 

After the winter slumber in barrel, spring warmth catalyses a natural Malolactic fermentation.  After a total of ten months in barrel, the wine is racked and bottled without fining or filtration.

It is a truly unique wine combining wild berry fruits, animal notes of grilled meat, floral notes of lilac and violet and a mineral tar-like element which gives it real presence. The palate reinforces these aromas with a dry svelte texture and seamless carry through the palate to a long finish.


Retail price $39.95, Club Price $35.95

Please email Emma at emma@easthope.co.nz if you would like to be waitlisted for the next vintage.