Tinpot Hut wines are made primarily from fruit grown on winemaker Fiona Turner's vineyard in Blind River. Fiona, who has worked with Matt Thomson for a number of years, supplements her own grapes with fruit from other growers in Marlboroughand Hawkes Bay. The tinpot hut that gave its name to Fiona's wines is an old mustering hut in the remote hills between the Wairau and Awatere Valleys. The huts were used as a base for musterers as they rounded up the sheep that had been in the hills from spring to autumn. The name links Marlborough's past as a sheep farming centre with its current state as one of the world's most dynamic wine regions.
This wine was produced from fruit grown on two specifically selected sites in Hawkes Bay. The Gimblett Gravels vineyard is warm and typically ripens early, producing fruit that contributes body and structure. The low vigour, free-draining soils deliver small crops with amazing concentration. The Esk Valley vineyard brings a coastal influence to the wine, intensifying the black pepper and floral aromatics.
Harvested at optimum maturity in cool conditions the fruit was de-stemmed into small open top fermenters. It was allowed to cold soak for five days prior to fermentation with selected yeasts and hand plunged three times daily. Following fermentation, the skins were drained and pressed to stainless steel tanks for 24 hours, prior to racking off gross solids to a mixture of small stainless steel ageing tanks, and new and mature French oak. Following malolactic fermentation, the wine was left to age for a further nine months prior to blending, stabilising and bottling in March Vintage_2013.
Ruby red with a purple hue, the Vintage_2012 Syrah has aromas of white and black pepper, violets and plums, with a subtle chocolate, leathery, spicy undertone. A medium-bodied complex wine in the style of Northern Rhône, it shows plum, pepper and cinnamon characteristics with a slight bacon note. A firm acid backbone with silky tannins harmonises with the fruit and culminates in a warm ripe finish.