Riverby Estate Noble Sauvignon Blanc Semillion 2013
Gold Medal NZ International Wine Show 2012
2013 was an exceptional vintage in Marlborough, which presented us with beautifully ripe fruit. Specially selected blocks of well ripened Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon were left for several weeks after the normal harvest had finished while botrytis gradually worked its magic. Select bunches were then hand picked and the fruit moved to the winery, where it was destemmed and cold soaked for 24 hours. It was then given a slow, gentle pressing to extract the tiny amount of rich, pure juice. After being cold settled both varieties were fermented separately in stainless steel very slowly at cool temperatures to retain fruit intensity. Fermentation was eventually stopped when the wine was perfectly balanced. The resulting wine comprised 60% Sauvignon Blanc and 40% Semillon.
A beautiful clean pure gold colour, this wine has enticing honey, floral, musky, tropical fruit and citrus aromas. The palate is all honey and mango, rich, unctuous and mouth-coating with lotus blossom and dried apricot nuances. It has crisp acidity a lovely texture and is vibrant and refreshing. The finish is long and lingering while remaining clean, elegant and refreshing. The sweetness is attractive and mouth-filling without being at all cloying. The wine promised to age gracefully for many years.
Alcohol: 10.8% Acidity: 6.6 PH: 3.89 Residual Sugar: 161 g/l
"A 60/40 blend made in the classic Sauternes style, this is a top-notch sweet wine exhibiting marmalade, tropical fruit, potpourri and honey aromas on the nose, followed by a powerful palate that's plush and gorgeously sweet. The wine is youthful yet offers outstanding complexity and harmony, superbly balanced by bright acidity. It's gloriously rich yet refreshing. At its best: now to 2023. $35.00 ***** 95/100"
Sam Kim Wine Orbit June 2014
"Bright straw-yellow colour with lemon-green hues and light golden suggestions, lighter on edge. This has a soft, broad and evenly presented nose with good depth of ripe greengages and green stonefruits, along with fine herbaceous and stalky elements, intermingling with lime marmalade and musk, powdery botrytis. Very sweet to taste and light-medium bodied, the flavours of green stonefruits, honeycomb, lime marmalade and musk are restrained in expression. This has a rounded but concentrated core and the wine has a degree of unctuousness, balanced by a line of lacy acidity. The flavours carry to a long, lingering rich finish of musky botrytis and lime marmalade. This is a soft, rich, near-unctuous Sauvignon Blanc-based dessert wine with green stonefruits, marmalade and musk flavours. Match with baked desserts over the next 4-5 years. "
Raymond Chan Wine Reviews March 2015
"Pale straw colored, the 2013 Noble Sauvignon Blanc Semillon offers a nose of lemon curd, beeswax and musk with a hint of candied peel. Fully sweet and viscous on the palate, it gives a good amount of relatively straightforward, candied citrus flavors with solid harmony and length. 89/100"
Lisa Perotti-Brown Wine Advocate April 2015
- "The 2013 vintage is light lemon/green, with mouthfilling body and generous, peachy, gently honeyed flavours, sweet (165 grams/litre of residual sugar) and smooth. Delicious young. "
Riverby Estate Noble Sauvignon Blanc Semillion 2011
Gold Medal NZ International Wine Show 2012
This is the very first Riverby Estate Noble Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon. It comprises 55% Sauvignon Blanc and 45% Semillon. A selected block of Sauvignon Blanc was left for almost eight weeks after our initial sauvignon harvest. It became heavily botrytised and we were lucky enough to get a pocket of perfect weather so it could be very carefully hand harvested. The yield was tiny. Similarly, after hand harvesting some perfectly clean Semillon for our dry wine we left the remainder of that block until it too became heavily botrytised. Both varieties were eventually selectively hand-picked between 25 and 28 May 2011.
The carefully selected fruit was moved to the winery, where it was destemmed and cold soaked for 24 hours. It was then given a slow, gentle pressing to extract the tiny amount of rich, pure juice. After being cold settled both varieties were fermented separately in stainless steel very slowly at cool temperatures to retain fruit intensity. Fermentation was eventually stopped when the wine was perfectly balanced. It was eventually bottled on 7 October 2011.
This stunning and quite rare wine is a bright pale gold in colour. It has the most enticing aromatics featuring an array of intensely ripe stonefruit characters, especially peach and apricot, but also a wide range of other complex flavours, notably marzipan and ripe, roasted, nutty characters. Vanillin, honeyed aromas add further complexity and allure.
It is luscious and mouth coating with an extraordinary richness and a beguiling sensual quality. Flavours of peach, passionfruit and citrus floating in a sea of honey all contribute to its complexity and depth. It has bright, beautifully appealing, well balanced acidity, a lusciously creamy sweetness and an almost endless, lingering, crisp, clean finish. This is a wine with immense appeal and charm. It promises to become even more attractive with careful cellaring as it develops increasingly complex characters.
Alcohol: 9.4% Acidity: 9.3 PH: 3.73 Residual Sugar: 254 g/l
"Golden blend of sauvignon blanc (55%) and semillon (45%), from fully botrytis-affected berries. Ravishingly honeyed bouquet, with concentrated apricot and honey flavours, an oily texture, abundant sweetness (250 grams/litre of residual sugar), and lovely ripeness and richness. $35 (A, UK, US) "
Michael Cooper, WineState, January 2012
"Light fresh gold... Bouquet is very youthful and uncoordinated as yet, showing clean botrytised sauvignon blanc at a good level of ripeness around the stonefruits level, no capsicum at all, but an intriguing touch of sweet basil, and threshold VA livening it up. Flavours in mouth are tending uncoordinated at this stage with a need to marry up more, but yellow peach dominates, maybe a little oak or maybe just varietal terpenes and phenolics concentrated by shrivel and botrytis. In standard sauvignons it is hard enough to tell whether some wines have seen a touch of oak or not, if the tannins are ripe, and this is the same – it is certainly aromatic. Length of flavour is good, and this wine too has no hints of leafyness or ignoble botrytis, as some sauvignon-based dessert wines from Marlborough have shown......... better in 18 months. Cellar 1 – 5 years. GK 10/11"
Geoff Kelly, Oct 2011
"A Sauternes-style blend but made Kiwi-style with lower alcohol and greater sweetness. Concentrated flavours with luscious honey that slightly dominates more discreet stone fruit varietal characters. Balanced with a great texture. An impressive, unusual and appealing wine. 92/100 "
Bob Campbell, June 2012