“New World wine tempered with Old World style.”

I’m super excited to tell you about one of the more recent additions to our portfolio – Churton Wines out of Malborough, New Zealand. A husband and wife team dedicated to producing limited volumes of high quality, 100% estate grown Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. In this Saturday’s VINTAGES release, LCBO is featuring the highly praised 2010 Churton Sauvignon Blanc for only $23.95. I say “only” because wines of this quality and complexity should (and usually do) cost far more!

Winemaker Sam Weaver is a veteran in the New Zealand wine industry, with experience in making wine all over the Malborough region since 1989. Churton follows biodynamicpractices in their vineyard operations, and is currently in organic conversion. They apply the principles of the biodynamic calendar to key viticultural and winemaking practices, and operations such as vine planting, fruit picking, filtering and bottling. They want their wines to be a true expression of their organic origin, producing “vins de terroir” not “vins de technique.” Their philosophy incorporates a traditional “old world” approach to viticulture, with a North East facing hillside vineyard with close planting and low cropping vines, and with all work done by hand, including picking at harvest. All wines are bottled in cork, rather than screw cap.

Truly, a boutique winery with incredible results… taste for yourself!


Le Sommelier

Churton Wines Sauvignon Blanc 2010

The Churton vineyards are very different to the vast majority of Marlborough Sauvignon vineyards. At a relatively high altitude of 200m above sea level with a clay loess soil and with small vines close planted. Our vineyard more resembles the clay based vineyards found in the central Loire Valley. All ten of the Sauvignon vineyards have different attributes and slightly different aspects. This means the fruit composition is very different. With their close planted vines 4630 vines/ha in comparison to the Marlborough norm of 2000vines/ha, Churton aims for small vines with only a small amount of fruit.  They prune the vines to two canes only and limit fruit to 1.5kg /vine!!

Here’s what the critics are saying:

”10% of the 2010 Sauvignon Blanc was fermented in new and used 500L French oak puncheons and this portion was aged 10 months in the puncheons. It offers notes of fresh grapefruit and lime juice over sage, chalk dust and lemon peel. Medium bodied and crisp in the mouth, it gives a great concentration of citrus flavors in the mouth with a long mineral and herb laced finish. Drink it now through 2013.”

Score: 90 – Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate

Le Sommelier is a ‘Certified Good Food Fighter