Recently the lovely Ang Wilson, Sales and Marketing Director for Rock Ferry Wines dropped off a couple of bottles of their Marlborough Sauvignon blanc – but not just any savvy, two Rock Ferry Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc “six vintages apart.”
Rock Ferry Wines was launched in 2005 when grape grower Tom Hutchison and his wife Fiona made small amounts of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Riesling and Chardonnay… Their philosophy is to “make real wines which speak of their home; to express the pure distinct flavours from our organic estate vineyards in Marlborough and Central Otago. It’s the way we live.”
This was a great opportunity to taste their first savvy and compare it with the latest release from 2011 – Rock Ferry don’t release their Sauvignon Blanc until around 18 months after production as they prefer it to develop and show some layers of depth and texture enabling it to age well. “It sees some oak, mostly seasoned with a small portion of new, and the wine speaks gently of the region.”
I opted to have a look at the aged Savvy first, just to see how it was standing up, and with it now being 8 years old was very pleasantly surprised. It turns out you don’t have to drink Sauvignon Blanc immediately after all…
Rock Ferry Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2005
I couldn’t find any winemakers’ notes online for this vintage but according to the back label, the grapes were picked at optimum ripeness and fermented predominantly in seasoned barriques using indigenous yeasts with some tank ferment to complete the blend.
Bright straw-gold in the glass, the age of the wine evident in the depth of colour. Delicious savoury nose with hint of capsicum and tropical fruit – quite dry on the palate, fine acidity but lovely oak texture and sweet & tart marmalade fruit components. Lots of layered complexity in the finish. Excellent drinking considering it being now 8 years old. No longer available, but if it was I’d most certainly buy it… Alc/V:12.5%
Rock Ferry Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2011
For this vintage the grapes were whole bunch pressed, with 70% going into a mix of new and seasoned oak with ferment from indigenous yeasts. The remainder was cool fermented in stainless steel tanks with cultured yeast. The wine then spends 8 months on lees until maturity, then blended and bottled.
Soft straw lemon coloured in the glass with intense green gooseberry and tropical passionfruit aromas a subtle hint oak and savoury notes on the nose. It has a wonderful acid backbone supported by lots of body and a creamy textured mouthfeel on the palate finishing with succulent refreshing citrus. I’d love to see this again in 6 years when it’s 8 years old too… Alc/V: 12.7% RRP: $25.00
The Rock Ferry brand and labels have had a total revamp recently, the Rock Ferry label now with a blind emboss of the Fibonacci sequence, while the RF logo is represented by a handmade woodcut. The ‘C’ in Rock Ferry joining the ‘O’ in ‘OF’ is also the symbol for Earth in bio dynamics.