Deep magenta with a crimson edge, this is signature Awatea - a modern Hawke’s Bay cabernet with deep, pure fruit and bright, floral aromatics. Roses, violets, wild blackberry and dark plum, intertwined with notes of aniseed and thyme. Then, on the palate, immediate bright red and black fruits, blackcurrants, spice, raspberry syrup and a layered, almost saline, tannin structure with a refreshingly, fine, dry finish. Awatea ’16, as ever, is stylish Te Mata cabernet that totally over-delivers.
WINEMAKING The separate parcels of grapes were destemmed before a traditional warm, plunged fermentation and extended maceration on skins. The resulting wines were then run to new and seasoned French oak barrels for 16 months’ ageing. Throughout this time, they were regularly topped and racked. The separate wines were blended in January 2017, then returned to barrel for their second winter. The finished wine was then egg white fined and bottled in November 2017. The final blend is 45% cabernet sauvignon, 41% merlot, 14% cabernet franc.
ORIGIN Awatea takes its name from the historic ship SS Awatea (a Maori word meaning “Eye of the Dawn”) that sailed the Auckland – Sydney – Wellington route in the late 1930s. The Awatea was requisitioned as a troop transport in WWII and was sunk off Algeria in 1942.