Great wine is made from great grapes. Or in other words, “you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear”. This underpins our wine making philosophy, great wine is made in the vineyard. No matter how clever a winemaker can be, he or she cannot produce great wine out of ordinary grapes. Great grapes cannot be mass produced, they require hands on devotion which can only be achieved in very limited quantities.
Our aim is to produce a special quality wine that is distinctive, unique, rich and luxurious. To achieve such quality, we decided to limit our vineyard size and the grape volume it could produce so that we can ensure that the high standards of production in both the vineyard and the winery are maintained through our direct involvement in all processes.
Expert advice indicated that Pinot Noir was an excellent choice for our land.
Nobody could have imagined what a great location this would be for creating great Pinot Noir when all around there were only hillsides being grazed by sheep and cattle. The conventional wisdom was dubious of planting grapes on clay soils and to plant on a hillside where terracing was required and care of the grapes is more demanding was considered too hard. People believed that quality grapes could only come from river gravels without the knowledge that some of the top quality, highly priced pinot noir wines from Burgundy are produced from clay based soils.
With a firm belief in our land, we planted our first pinot noir in 2008. Since then our insight has been rewarded with beautifully ripe grapes from the wonderful vintage of 2013, our very first, and continues to be confirmed with more quality vintages. We look forward to growing our reputation as the vines age and we build upon our knowledge and understanding gained from each different vintage as to how to create the best grapes and wine possible.
Pinot Noir has proven to be perfect for the site. Our terroir and commitment produce a rich, intense, masculine Pinot Noir with great body and structure, a wine to savour and with the longevity to cellar.
Our desire to produce top level wine founded on the substance of the product has prompted us to choose the ancient roman artefact, la bocca della verità, the mouth of truth, as our symbol.
It is a large circular piece of marble about 2 metres in diameter and 100 mm thick and was originally used in pre-Christian Rome as a means to extract the “truth”. The accused was required to place his hand in the mouth of the face while being questioned. If the powers that be decided the accused was guilty of the alleged wrong, the nod was given and the wretch lost his hand to a sharp blade behind the face. When it comes to wine, contrary to the circumstances where the powers that be dictated the truth, the truth is evident only to the drinker when the glass comes to the mouth, when the wine has been tasted. The symbol we have chosen serves to remind us of this.
Our vineyard sits in the hills of the northern end of Central Hawkes Bay. Being up in altitude with a more hilly terrain, it is significantly cooler than the Heretaunga plains of Hawkes Bay.
We’ve planted on a north west facing slope towards the bottom of a narrow valley. This contributes to grape quality but in the spring we often have to fight quite severe frosts. While in the summer we enjoy heat in the shelter of the valley, summer nights are generally cool. Pinot Noir likes the heat by day and the cool of the night.
Narrow rows running across the face of a hill have meant that most work is done by hand except for mowing and spraying by my custom built machine. Even the 3 to 4 kilometres of terraces had to be dug in by hand. Every plant and every shoot gets a lot of individual attention in order to achieve the open canopy as seen on our home screen. From the removal of excess buds right at the start of the spring to the removal of sub-standard fruit at the end of the season, each plant would get at least a dozen personal visits.
To maximise flavour and texture, fruit production is strictly limited. Only one bunch per shoot is the rule, where excess bunches are removed as soon as possible after the fruit is formed. In some years, plant yield has been less than 500g per plant. No irrigation is applied. Fruit that shows any sign of defect or is slower to mature is removed. There is no production target. Only the best fruit is retained at harvest and only our own fruit is used in our wines.
Our methodology results in production yields quite similar to the Grand Crus of Burgundy. It is also interesting to note that many of the Grand Cru vineyards are tiny like ours.
Every year is going to be different. No matter what you do, you cannot escape or manipulate nature. Although the season will have a major influence on the nature of the wine, it will still be built on the foundation of the site: its soils, its aspect, its terroir. Underlying every vintage, the signature of our single vineyard from which all our grapes are sourced will be present, even though there will be variations from year to year. It is clear, however, that the quality of wine is determined by the quality of grape.
The process is kept simple, with the objective to extract the full potential of the grape.
Small batches, pre-fermentation soaking, hand plunging, post fermentation maceration and basket pressing by hand prepare the wine for maturation in oak. Seasoned oak and new oak barrels are used. After about 9 months, the barrels are blended to achieve the best balance of flavour and structure. Clarification is achieved by racking. Fining, filtration and cold stabilisation are not employed. (There is one exception where the 2014 Pinot Noir was fined using egg whites.)
Our wine style is determinedly towards the camp of fully structured and richly flavoured wines that will be long lived and improve with age. The site terroir pushes us in this direction and our wine making tends to follow. It seems logical to produce the style that we personally prefer.
We are not organic or biodynamic but our practices reflect a firm conviction in sustainable production. As a small grower and producer our impact on the environment is negligible.
Our high standards and the hands on nature of our way of doing things are demanding. We certainly don’t have economies of scale but we do have the opportunity to optimise the qualities of each small batch. The reward is in the creation of a hand crafted wine that is unique and authentic.
This is a fully-structured, masculine style full bodied Pinot Noir with black fruits, savoury herbs, earth and minerals.
Cellaring: is expected to improve to 2025 and maintain to 2030 and beyond
Unfiltered, not fined and may contain sediment
yield - 0.449 kg / plant
2100 bottles produced*
Brix – 24.9
pH – 3.29
TA – 6.0g/L
This is a full, soft, layered Pinot Noir with spicy red fruit, plums and liquorice ona grainy-textured palate.
Cellaring: will continue to develop over the next 3-4 years.
Unfiltered, may contain sediment.
yield - 0.790 kg / plant
3600 bottles produced*
Brix – 23.3
pH – 3.54
TA – 6.5g/L
This is a rich and powerful black-fruited Pinot Noir with iron-earth and mineral notes and great vitality.
Cellaring: will mature and develop in character and complexity beyond 2025
Unfiltered, not fined and may contain sediment
yield - 0.524 kg / plant
2400 bottles produced*
Brix – 24.6
pH – 3.52
TA – 5.8g/L
*numbers quoted are 750 ml bottle equivalents, some 375 bottles have been produced
Single 750ml Bottle Pricing:
Pinot Noir 2013 - $68.95 per bottle (incl of GST) plus freight of $8.00, a total of $76.95
Pinot Noir 2014 - $48.95 per bottle (incl of GST) plus freight of $8.00, a total of $56.95
Pinot Noir 2015 -$68.95 per bottle (incl GST) plus freight of $8.00, a total of $76.95
Cases of Six 750 ml Bottles
Pinot Noir 2013 – $59.95 per bottle (incl of GST) a total of $359.70
Pinot Noir 2014 - $39.95 per bottle (incl of GST) a total of $239.70
Pinot Noir 2015 - $59.95 per bottle (incl of GST) a total of $359.70
Mixed orders are no problem, just ask! For example a mixed case of 6 could be 3 of the 2013 Pinot Noir and 3 of the 2014 Pinot Noir.
The freight charge for single bottle orders is $8.00 for anywhere in New Zealand. All 6 bottle plus orders are freight free.
Please email your order details to Lauregan Wines at email@example.com stating numbers of bottles, your delivery address, any special instructions and to whom the invoice should be made out to. We will email you back acknowledging your order with an invoice, our bank account details and confirming the address to which we will deliver the wine. The order will be despatched as soon as payment has been received via internet banking or if paying by cheque, once the cheque has cleared.
To satisfy liquor licencing requirements, please state in your email that you are 18 years of age or older.
We thank you in advance for your order.