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2020 Halcyon Days Veil

2020 Halcyon Days Veil

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Veil, a predominant Sauvignon Blanc based wine with partial fermentation aged untopped in barrel under flor...

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"There’s something about oxidative wine styles that makes the wines seem almost timeless. Which is strange, because in winemaking terms, oxidation can be corruption – it heralds the beginning of the end of a wine.
And yet, if you can hold on to that, encase it – as they do in the Jura mountains of eastern France or in the cool bodegas of sun-baked Jerez – then it’s almost as if you’re tasting something from before your time. It’s like you’re tasting a wine of your ancestors; a wine as it is forever, to which no more can occur. Needless to say, from Sherry to the Jura, we love these oxidative wine styles and we wanted to see what we could do here in Heretaunga. We wanted to age a white wine in a barrel and not top it up so it developed a film – a “voile” (veil) as they say in the Jura – that would both lock-in and protect those oxidative notes.
It was also important, we felt, to keep the bright acidity typical of both the Jura and the Jerez/Sherry wines. So we took some of the wine freshly-fermented as Kōtare and put something like 230L of it into a 265L barrel. And we left it. And left it. And left it. For a year. We didn’t get a thick film on the surface of the wine (to our disappointment we never had call to deploy one of those long barrel thieves used in Jerez to punch through the flor, or film, to get to the wine
underneath) but we got a veil, and so veil it is called. Blend: Sauvignon Blanc fermented with its skins (of which 40% was whole bunches) along with a
touch of whole bunch Gewurztraminer.