Click to find out more.
In 2014 Brendon and Charlotte Bray along with Charlotte’s parents Colin and Paula Hill purchased Fairhall Downs Estate in Marlborough’s Brancott Valley. Since the original planting in 1982, this stunning 25ha site has had a proud record of producing single vineyard wines of exceptional and world renowned quality. In early 2018 the family purchased a well regarded adjacent vineyard (literally across the road in the same valley) adding another dimension to the premium quality of Fairhall Downs. Fairhall Downs is one of just a handful of Marlborough producers making 100% family estate-grown wines. Their obsessive vine management and yield limiting practices ensure optimum flavour concentration and the maximum fruit expression possible from our little piece of the world.
It is not overstating it to say Fairhall Downs is a truly family affair. Brendon’s wife, Charlotte, and the children have proven themselves a great help with bud-rubbing and bird scaring – though the children’s staying power leave something to be desired!
The Brancott Valley has its own little microclimate, with very low rainfall, cooler nights and warmer days than is typical of Marlborough. Our vineyard soils are uniquely free-draining with a nutrient rich top layer and a gravel clay base, making it easy for root penetration – perfect soil for growing grapes.
The 2020 vintage season started with a “growthy” spring leading into a very dry summer with growing degree days well above average. A hot February meant fruit had a great start to ripening. Fruit continued to ripen in ideal conditions that continued into March with no rainfall, cool nights, and warm days. The perfect weather conditions led to easy vine management. A brilliant vintage one ‘out of the box’.
Fruit was harvested at optimum ripeness for flavour profile desired. Juice was clarified following traditional cold settling and racking before being inoculated with selected yeast strains for complexity. A cool fermentation in stainless steel tanks allowed the fruit aromatics to be preserved. A small portion was fermented in mature French oak barrels, to bring texture and mouthfeel to this unique wine.
Punchy pink grapefruit aromas with notes of passion fruit and lime in the background. Beautiful freshness on the palate, concentrated fruit and great acidity well balanced by a rich weighty palate from the barrel fermented components. The wine has a great length and a vibrant, zesty lime finish.
South East Asian fare, with lots of lime and spice flavours.
Most would say that NZ Sauvignon Blanc needs drinking in its vintage year, but we recommend careful cellaring for at least 2 years for pure enjoyment.
Don’t just take our word for it…
“Pristine and fabulously expressed, showing Granny
Smith apple, nectarine, kaffir lime and subtle musky notes on the nose, leading to a
concentrated palate displaying excellent focus and persistency. It’s vibrant and
wonderfully flavoursome with a lengthy delicious finish. At its best: now to 2023.”
5 STARS – 94 POINTS SAM KIM www.wineorbit.co.nz