Growing Region: Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand
Owner / Winemaker: Peter Robertson
An occasion when you allow yourself to experience something highly enjoyable, especially more than normal - we call this an ‘indulgence’. Even after just enjoying the aroma you will want more - and then when tasting this most engaging of dessert wines - your taste buds will resent you forever if you never indulge again. Making any style of dessert wine is fraught with complications and even failure before the fruit is even harvested let alone reaching the winery.
Several years ago, I still remember the day when Peter first told me that he was making a ‘Botrytis’ Viognier - he described the process and the resulting wine as pure indulgence. You need ideal conditions for botrytis to develop appropriately in the vineyard and for grapes to be affected in a balanced fashion - a key concern during the growing season before knowing exactly when to harvest.
The botrytis affected Viognier grapes for the ‘Indulgence’ were grown at Ohiti Estate and also on the Hillside site at Bridge Pa. Both sites had suitable conditions for the grapes to remain on the vines without developing rampant botrytis prematurely and were picked at their peak of sugar levels and balanced acidity.
The ripe fruit was carefully handpicked on the 27th April and the 5th May 2016. The sugar levels peaked at 56 Brix. It was one of the best botrytis infections that Peter has experienced of making such a wine at Brookfields.
After gently pressing and then a period of settling, the grape ‘must’ was cold fermented for a lengthy period of time and was finally stopped when the alcohol had reached balanced character at 9.5% alc/vol and a mere 250 g/L of natural residual sugar.
As you pour this viscous wine into your appropriate small glass, you will be greeted by an enticing straw yellow colour. On the nose your senses are over whelmed by summer ripen, sweet apricots and fresh honeycomb. The palate is an explosion of flavours, expressing rich and fragrant characters of passion-fruit, rock-melon, honey and small sweet apricots are all evident and contribute to the incredible palate depth and length. Due to the incredible level of residual sugar, the 2016 ‘Indulgence’ will continue to enrich in the bottle for those with patience. The wines natural acidity is perfectly balanced and seamless, hence there is no cloying on the palate or on the long finish. It is a perfect indulgence which can be shared with friends.
This 2016 Brookfields ‘Indulgence’ Botrytis Viognier has 9.5% Alc. Chill gently and serve in a small narrow glass at 8-10°C.
A pure ‘indulgence’ - which is worth sharing.
Drinking perfectly well this dessert season; and will age gracefully for another 8-10 years, or until temptation wins!
FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTIONS:
Perfect wine with cheesecake, homemade lemon meringue pie, grilled peaches with hokey-pokey ice-cream, mousse desserts and with aged blue cheeses - enjoy.