Villa Maria Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon / Merlot is made from grapes sourced entirely from Villa Maria’s vineyards situated in the Gimblett Gravels Growing Region in Hawke’s Bay. This unique area is fast being recognised for producing consistently high coloured and full flavoured Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wines.
Villa Maria is probably one of the most famous New Zealand winery and, alongside Cloudy Bay, is responsible for the initial popularity of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc in the the UK. The origins of Villa Maria stretch back to 1961 when, aged 21, Sir George Fistonich leased 5 acres of land from his father, planted vines and started making wine. Since those first cuttings took hold in the soil out in Mangere, near Auckland, Sir George has been determined to be at the cutting edge of quality wine-growing. Today Villa Maria is available in more than 50 countries around the world and has claimed the title of New Zealand’s Most Awarded Winery for over thirty consecutive years.
Villa Maria Reserve range of wines is a selection of the best examples of vintage, vineyard and varietal character, aged in the best barriques etc. The fruit for the Villa Maria Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon / Merlot comes from different Gimblett Gravels vineyards each with their own unique characteristics. The free draining soils of these sites help ensure balanced fruit and canopy growth which is essential for ripe flavours and tannin development. Yields are cropped low allowing vines to produce fruit that is richly concentrated in colour, flavour and structure.
Grapes were 100% destemmed and crushed and the cap then plunged four times a day. The time on the skins was between three and four weeks. Fermentation took place in open-top stainless steel fermenters at 30° C. Malolactic fermentation was conducted in 100% French oak barrels (40% new barrel). The wine was matured for 18 months. The blend is 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Merlot.