Te Mata Showcase Vintage 2021

  • Celia Hay

For Nick Buck launching the Te Mata Showcase Vintage 2021, was a paradox.  

‘Here we are presenting potentially our best every vintage of wines at one of the most horrific times for Hawkes Bay’.

He went on to describe the heart-breaking devastation in Hawkes Bay. While the cities of Napier and Hastings were essentially fine, other areas were covered in metres of silt and mud with fruit trees, vineyards, fences just swept away. There is no insurance cover for damage caused by slips to farm fences or things growing in the ground like vines and apple trees. He explained that much of the re-construction must be funded privately because of the lack of insurance policies for much of the damage.

Those thoughts aside, Te Mata is so proud of the 2021 vintage which builds on the splendid and highly-rated vintages of 2019 and 2020.

Te Mata Cape Crest 2021

Sauvignon Blanc 87% Sauvignon Gris 9%, Semillon 4%. Fermented in oak barrels, aged on lees and this year bottled under screwcap. Tropical and herbal notes with a savoury finish. Delicious now but will also continue to develop in the bottle.

Te Mata Elston 2021

Nick describes this classic Chardonnay from Hawkes Bay as a wine that ‘rings a bell’ with Chardonnay drinkers. Te Mata is moving away from the dominant Mendoza clone which displays high malic acid and requires malolatic fermentation. Gradually they have been introducing other chardonnay clones such as Burgundy clones 548 which allow less malo and result in a more modern, tighter style of Chardonnay.

Ripe Nectarines and Peaches with balanced acidity, toasted hazelnuts and cinnamon on the palate. This year bottled under screwcap.

Te Mata Alma Pinot Noir 2021

From vines planted first planted in 1998, this is the 4th vintage of Alma. At the tasting Nick recounted the background to the wine’s name. In the Crimean War of 1854, where Britain and France fought Russia, Dr James Thompson, an ancestor of Wendy Buck’s died of cholera after administering care to hundreds of injured Russian soldiers abandoned on the battlefield. Alma pays homage to this family memory.

Fresh, ripe red cherries and violets with mellow layers of oak and sweet spices. Will continue to evolve over the next 5 years.

Te Mata Bullnose Syrah 2021

From grapes planted in 1984, Syrah has roots that dive deep into the soil. Grapes are sourced from three different Te Mata vineyards.

Bright Black cherries and fragrant white pepper, concentrated with layers of oak and velvety texture. A youthful wine that will continue to evolve over the next decade.

Te Mata Awatea 2021

This is the vineyard where Nick lives and he describes this wine as showing the scent of Hawke’s Bay. 50% Cabernet Sauvignon 36% Merlot 14% Cabernet Franc

Deep purple, dense plums, blackcurrant, crumbled dried herbs, bay leaves, dusty, cedar. A youthful wine now that will be rewarded with more maturation. 

Te Mata Coleraine 2021

The flagship wine of Te Mata. 56% Cabernet Sauvignon 33% Merlot 12% Cabernet Franc

Deep crimson-purple hue, blackcurrant, blackberries, crushed thyme, elevated acidity, ripe tannins, youthful now but will continue to develop and in time become

a multi-decade wine.

Celia Hay


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