Colour: Intense ruby red with a vibrant shiny glow.
Nose: Lively and aromatic redolent of sun-drenched herbs with hints of coriander and thyme.
Palate: Spicy with a slightly dry finish. A lovely intensity of herbal and fruit flavours similar to those evident on the nose. A combination of long savoury fruit tannins from well ripened fruit and well-seasoned oak.
The grapes from 2 degrees. vineyard are hand-harvested and trucked up to Wanaka where the wines are carefully hand crafted by Dan and Sarah-Kate Dineen at the Maude Winery. The fruit is generally left to cool off overnight before going through the de-stemming process. Very traditional fermentation takes place in open-topped tanks which are hand plunged. Indigenous yeasts begin the cycle and a portion of whole bunch, lignified stalks and all, is included in each fermenter to add special flavours and put the tannins to good use. The juice is left on the skins for a month to allow tannin development prior to gentle basket pressing.
Maturation takes place in French oak barriques of which 40% are new. After about 10 months and with minimal filtration and fining, the wine is bottled almost a year after harvest. The bottles have a stelven cap closure.
Two Degrees Vineyard has all the right ingredients to be special:
Free-draining bony soils
Requisite grower degree days of around 1000
Large diurnal range i.e. significant variation between maximum and minimum temperature each day - hot days cool nights
Long, warm, dry, still autumns coupled with elevation and an enduring canopy allow the fruit to hang on the vines longer than most
Low humidity and rainfall
And its outlook is like being slapped in the face with a National Geographic! Stunning! What a splendid place to work.