Tasting Notes 1989
It was also blended in the proportions of 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc.
The 1989 Coleraine has a pronounced dark-purple colour with a ripe berry and spicy oak aroma, full soft tannins and a lingering finish.
It will improve markedly in the first five years from harvest, and will then continue to develop at a slower rate for a further 3-5 years.
Total acidity as tartaric: 6.6g/l
Residual sugar: Dry
The three varieties, cabernet sauvignon, merlot and cabernet franc were picked and processed separately.
The grapes were hand-picked, completely destemmed and then crushed to small (8 tonne) fermenters. A warm (maximum 29°C) fermentation followed, lasting eight days during which the cap was plunged and the wine pumped over every six hours.
The wine was on skins for a further 12 days, and was then run into oak barriques, 70% of which were new.
During its 20 months in barrel, the wine was racked every three months and was egg-white fined.
The grapes for the 1989 Coleraine were harvested between the 10th and the 23rd March, the earliest on record.
Coleraine derives its name from the Coleraine vineyard, home of John and Wendy Buck of Te Mata Estate. John’s late grandfather came from Coleraine in Northern Ireland and the name has been maintained through the family properties to the wine. Originally a single vineyard wine, from 1989 Coleraine has been an assemblage of the ﬁnest wines produced from distinct plots within Te Mata Estate’s oldest vineyards on the Havelock Hills.
“I conjectured whether this is New Zealand’s greatest wine? Well, let me put it this way, it is the frontrunner… a complex, intellectual entity that rewards long term cellaring year after year.”Neal Martin's Wine Journal, May 2008 All Reviews