Pegasus Bay BEL CANTO - Tasting Notes

Bel Canto - 2014

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A humid autumn, following a warm summer, produced a perfect amount of noble botrytis in this riesling. It was fermented at low temperatures. There is a tantalising array of aromas and flavours reminiscent of nectarine, peach, apricot, and citrus fruits, particularly mandarin, orange, and lime. A floral element, gives hints of honeysuckle and orange blossom. On the palate it is big boned, muscular and spicy with lingering impressions of mango and crushed ginger that draw out the aftertaste and complement its zingy minerality and crisp acidity.


 Wine in moderation is a natural health food. 

Bel Canto - 2011

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A La Nina pattern in the South Pacific produced an excellent season. The hand selected fruit for this late harvest riesling, which was grown in mineral rich stony soil, had at least 30% beautifully raisined botrytis. It was fermented at low temperatures, a portion being by the action of the fruits indigenous yeasts in large old oak vats..

On release the wine has a bright lemon hue. The aromas and flavours suggest lemons, limes, nectarines and peaches, with a hint of passionfruit. It is rich and powerful in the mouth but yet remains elegant, tight knit and focused. There is a spine of minerality and crisp acidity which flow through the palate and draw out its length. While ready to drink on release it can be expected to develop a further array of characters with careful cellaring, especially those suggesting mandarin, orange and apricot .

Bel Canto - 2010

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The season suited riesling with a summer that was not too hot and an Indian summer with seemingly endless warm, dry days.  Our vines, which are up to a quarter of a century in age, have roots that can penetrate deeply into the mineral rich, stony soil and allow this very individual terroir to express itself in the wine. 

On release the aromas and flavours suggest lemons, limes, apples, greengages and nectarines.  On entry it seems deceptively light, but quickly expands to fill the mouth with impressive fruit concentration and depth.  There is a spine of mouth tingling minerality, which comes from the soils, that flows throughout the wine and draws out its lingering aftertaste.  With careful cellaring over the next 5 or 6 years, this wine should develop a range of other characters and complexity.

Bel Canto - 2009

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The outcrop of land on which these grapes were grown consists largely of weathered stones.  Millions of years ago these were torn off New Zealand’s mighty Southern Alps and deposited in selected valleys.  This individual terroir has shaped this wine.

Bel Canto - 2008

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The spring and early summer were warm and so exceptionally dry that we felt the vines might suffer from the effects of drought. In February we had the unexpected; a torrential downpour set the dry streams gurgling merrily and totally replenished the ground water reserves.  Late in autumn we had humid conditions which led to some botrytis developing in riesling.  Many producers picked early to minimise the effect of this but fortunately we braved it out until the weather cleared and the patches of botrytis became beautifully shrivelled and noble.

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