Moss Wood Ribbon Vale 2018 Sauvignon Blanc Semillon
|Median Harvest:||Sauvignon Blanc – 21st February, 2018
Semillon – 15th March, 2018
|Yield:||Sauvignon Blanc – 13.97 t/ha
Semillon – 11.47 t/ha
|Baume:||Sauvignon Blanc –11.2° Baume
Semillon – 13.5° Baume
Colour and condition:
The hue is light to medium straw with green tints. Condition is bright.
A lifted and zesty aroma combination of leaf, gooseberry and citrus of Sauvignon Blanc, combining with a nice addition of lemon sherbet and fig from the Semillon. There are also some nice bread dough-like notes underneath, a product of the barrel fermentation.
Here the theme of freshness continues, with a zesty leaf and citrus fruit depth, lifted by crisp acidity. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and the texture is nicely rounded, with a touch of bread dough. The finish is clean, with no lingering tannin or bitterness.
Ripening Time from Flowering to Harvest
2018 Ribbon Vale Sauvignon Blanc – 96 days
2018 Ribbon Vale Semillon – 118 days
Just as Moss Wood Semillon reveled in the good 2017/18 growing season, so did Ribbon Vale Sauvignon and Semillon. The numbers give a clear picture of just how good things were. Sauvignon Blanc was picked at 11.2° Baume on 21st February, 5 days earlier than average, with a yield of 14 tonnes per hectare. The Semillon came off on15th March at 13.5° Baume with a yield of 11.5 tonnes per hectare, a very handy 10% above average. Flavours, ripeness and yields were virtually exactly where we want them. How much of this was skill and how much was luck will be up to others to debate and we’ll leave readers to draw their own conclusions. Naturally, we at Moss Wood reckon it’s the former!
Having raw material of this quality meant that in the winery our aim was to make sure we got it safely in to bottle. For both varieties, the hand-picked fruit was whole bunch pressed and the juice was settled in stainless tank. The clear juice was racked to stainless steel, fermentation was commenced with multiple yeast strains and after 4 days, the must was racked to barrels. All were 228 litre French barriques but none were new, because we are only seeking the textural improvement rather than oak character.
After fermentation was completed, all the barrels were racked to stainless steel, with final blend being 74% Sauvignon Blanc and 26% Semillon.
Fining trials were then carried out and the wine was treated only with bentonite for protein stability. The balance of the wine was excellent and no improvement was found using the proteinaceous agents, egg white or skim milk. It was then sterile filtered and bottled on 6th July, 2018.
With all this freshness, the 2018 Sauvignon Blanc Semillon is a difficult thing to resist and really, it should be drunk young, when these characters are so much to the fore. Nevertheless, for those who want to see some softening of the palate and a little more caramel-like complexity on the nose, we recommend at least 5 years aging.