Wednesday, 1 February 2012

A Dinner with Kevin Judd from Greywacke

One of the great things of working for an independent wine merchant (The Vineking) is that I get to go to all the events that we organise, such as the a dinner with Kevin Judd at the Dining Room in Reigate. For those of you who don’t know who Kevin is, he’s the winemaker from Greywacke, formerly the founding wine maker from probably New Zealand’s most iconic wine, Cloudy Bay. Kevin produced the first 25 vintages at Cloudy Bay, and introduced the world to the fantastic Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, after leaving Cloudy Bay; Kevin decided he wanted to continue wine making, but now under his own label, Greywacke. He buy’s his fruit from various vineyards around Marlborough, including from his good friends at Dog Point (another one of our favourites) who are the other original founders of Cloudy Bay, they also very kindly let him use their facilities to produce his wines. He did remark that it’s now more affectionately known as the Cloudy Bay retirement home, as many of the original staff from Cloudy Bay now work at Dog Point or with Kevin at Greywacke.

Kevin talking to the room
Listening to Kevin talk about his wines and the wine making process, the most amazing thing was how little intervention he did with them, to put it in his own words, I press the grapes, put the juice into the tanks or barrels depending on which wine he’s making, and leave it to get on and do it’s own thing! This all helps to keep the pure fruit flavours that you find in his wines; another thing was the use of wild yeasts to produce his Wild Sauvignon and his Pinot Noir, which just help to add another dimension to his wines.

Along with the wines we’ve sold in the past, he also bought some of his Chardonnay and Pinot Gris for us to taste, and like his other wines we know so well they didn’t disappoint, unfortunately at present they are only produced in small quantities, but we are hoping to get some of his next vintage of the Chardonnay, but again we only be able to receive a small quantity, so if your interested in them, then make sure you get your orders in early!

The wine we had on tasting were;

2011 Sauvignon Blanc – this just had beautiful green fruit flavours and aromas, with a touch of minerality to go with it, great acidity, producing a beautifully restrained and elegant glass of wine.

2010 Wild Ferment Sauvignon – with a much richer mouth feel, and more complexity than his ordinary Sauvignon, it had a hint of Vanilla and softness to the acidity which just made this wine absolutely stunning.

2009 Chardonnay – again this wine had a real richness to it, with slightly savoury/lanolin aromas, with a touch of citrus on the palate and a creamy texture, combined with a minerality and a long lingering finish that made this wine just amazing.

2010 Pinot Noir – with both some dark and red fruit flavours and aromas in the glass, intermingled with a smoky vanilla oak, soft fine tannin and a great acidity to it, and a length of flavour that just kept on giving, this wine definitely did not disappoint.

Several empty bottles of his Pinot Gris
2010 Pinot Gris – this wine was slightly off dry, but with stone and dried fruit flavours, the perfect amount of acidity, and as with all the others a length of flavour that just kept on giving, it worked very well the raspberry and vanilla in the desert, but was a little challenged by the chocolate.

I have to say, my favourite of the night was his Wild Sauvignon, but we couldn’t find fault with any of range and I’d highly recommend any of his wines for you to try.

1 comment:

  1. I love Kevins wines. I think the wild ferment SB is particularly stand-out, probably due to the fact that it breaks the mould of typical NZ SBs. Also keen on the Pinot Gris, actually I like a lot of NZ Pinot Gris so maybe thats a back-up white varietal for them now that nothing seems to be coming of the Gruner Veltliner that was promised. Keep up the good work, Roger !