Kate Radburnd awarded Hall of fame 2021 Hawkes Bay wine awards
16points - JancisRobinson.com 

“Released October 2020. 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon. Kate Radburnd has 35 vintages under her belt and until now has made wine for other people, mainly at Pask.
Here she launches her own label. These grapes were hand-picked from free-draining sites. Aged for 21 months in a mix of French barriques. TA 5.8 g/l. Appetising, gently- textured wine that's far from a blockbuster but has good integrity. Lifted, leafy nose and some sweetness on palate entry but nothing heavy or exaggerated. I'm tasting this, as instructed, at room temperature but I think it could take a little cooling too. Light to medium body. Quite sophisticated. When to drink 2020 – 2026”

4.5 stars Buyers Guide Edition 2021 - Michael Cooper
“The debut 2018 vintage (4.5*) is from mature vines grown in the Bridge Pa Triangle and 'on the gravels'. Hand-picked, it is a blend of Merlot (70 per cent) and Cabernet Sauvignon (30 per cent), matured for 21 months in French oak barriques (partly new). Full-coloured, with a fragrant, savoury bouquet, it is an elegant, youthful red, with ripe plum/spice flavours, seasoned with nutty oak, and a fairly firm finish. Restrained in its youth, but showing excellent concentration and complexity, it's well worth cellaring to 2023+.”

19/20 - Candice Chow
“Deep ruby-red with some transparency, lighter on edge. The nose has an elegant core and growing in intensity, nuances of red currants, cassis entwined with vanillin, cedar and red earth. Medium-full bodied, nuances of red currants, cassis and cranberries are vibrant, unfolding vanilla, cardamom, cedar, along with red earth mineral. The structure is supported by fine-grained and silky tannin with a fine grip, elegantly presented, lingering with cedar and oak spices; along with a delicate acid tension shows focus and vitality, lends a long sustained finish. This is a stylish Merlot-Cabernet blend with red-fruited characters, complexing cedar and spices along an elegant silky tannin structure line. Match with braised brisket and skirt steak over the next 8+ years. Parcels of Merlot and Cabernet selected from Ngaruroro River and old vines Merlot from Bridge Pa region. Handpicked, hand-sorted, destemmed. Foot stomped in open-top fermenters, some Merlot whole bunches, fermented to 13.5% alc. Aged in new and seasoned barriques for 21 months, final blend approx 70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon.”

94 Excellent - Cameron Douglas – www.camdouglasms.com -
“A lovely balance between the merlot's plum and its velvet softness, the power of the cabernet with a core of blackberry - both combined with scents of some cigar/tobacco and toast notes. On the palate flavours reflect the nose with a seamless transition to texture, firm tannins, ripe tannins and supple moments. Medium+ acidity. A complete wine with some powerful youthful textures and a core of fruit, violets and plums, blackberries and spices. Hand harvested and hand sorted, foot stomped and barrel for 21 months before release. Excellent drinking today - if decanted or best from 2022. 2030 wine.”

Powerful, restrained and elegant, this blend exhibits lifted aromatics and berry fruits, revealing layers of complexity that will slowly unfold. Highly structured with balanced acidity and tannin, this wine will continue to evolve for the next decade.

The 2018 vintage began with a welcome frost-free spring, followed by a warm, dry Hawke’s Bay summer with above average temperature. March saw moderate rainfall and high humidity. Settled weather from early April resulted in a warm, dry finish to vintage.

Parcels of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon were hand-picked from selected sites on the gravel soils of the old Ngaruroro River, and old vine Merlot from the Bridge Pa region. Bridge Pa Triangle soils feature fine silt loam over red metal gravels, while the gravel sites protected by Roys Hill, feature gravel over fine silt. These sites are free draining and low in fertility, resulting in struggling vines producing fruit of great concentration. Low yielding vines, open canopy management, managed irrigation and Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand farmed were common to all sites. Bridge Pa Merlot delivers ripe, dark plums which compliments the spicy brighter fruits from the gravels. Cabernet thrives on gravel sites and contributes structure, acidity, and fragrant berry fruit notes.

Batches of hand harvested fruit was chilled overnight before processing the following day. Chilled bunches were hand sorted and de-stemmed, and whole berries were transferred to open fermenters with some foot stomping. Whole bunches were also incorporated in some of the Merlot fermenters. The berries were cold soaked before fermentation, with pumping over twice per day then pressed to barriques at the end of fermentation. The Merlot and Cabernet matured for 21 months in new and seasoned French oak barriques. Blended in December 2019 and bottled in January
2020, the final blend is approximately 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon.

An elegant Merlot Cabernet blend which exhibits lifted aromatics of fragrant berry fruits, sweet French oak, and underlying lavender and thyme. Complex and textural, seamless tannins harmoniously support red and black fruits, earthiness, and spice. Tautly poised to develop beautifully with bottle age.


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