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The image of the hand is a symbol of strength, gateway to the heart, tiller of the soil, the mark of the artisan, and embodies the philosophy of Seresin Estate
The sentinel stone at the entrance to Seresin Estate signals the path to the winery and herald's the philosophy of the winemakers. The stone bears a subtle handprint, a symbol of the individual, and of creative endeavour. It represents a philosophy to blend tradition with technology, to work with natural elements and elicit a true Marlborough character to the wines. Organically grown, hand-tended, some fermented with wild yeasts, the grapes from the estate are raised on a cornerstone of working in harmony with nature. Complex flavours and sensational palate texture are hallmarks of Seresin.
The Seresin Estate grapes, gown on the Wairau River's warm alluvial terraces, are picked at the close of the long Marlborough summer. In the winery, minimal intervention allows the layers of flavour to evolve, so the wines are a natural expression of the soil from which they come. Founded in 1992 the terraces deliver natural advantages, basking in the highest sunshine hours in New Zealand, sheltered between the sweep of parallel mountain ranges. The two terraces provide distinct meso-climates and soil types: on the lower terrace, silty loam over free-draining river gravels lends elegance to our white wines, while Pinot Noir thrives on the upper level tongue of clay.
In practising biodynamics, Seresin use a range of different preparations to help balance and enrich the soils. Preparations are used in combination to enhance the availability of soil minerals to plants. A concoction of yarrow flowers and a stag's bladder enhances the activities of sulphur, nitrogen, potassium and trace elements. Dried after hanging in the open for about two weeks, the stag's bladder is stuffed with yarrow flowers and left to hang in a tree over the summer, then buried in a clay pipe over winter. The remaining material is then incorporated into the cow-pat-pits, composts and seaweed teas. Why a stag's bladder? Practically, the dried stag's bladder makes an excellent container and is fully natural and biodegradable - an example of traditional, self-sufficient agriculture using the full resources of the Estate. It is also interesting to see the structure of the yarrow flower strongly resembles a stag's antlers.
On Wednesday mornings, the Seresin Estate staff catch up for some morning tea and an informal staff meeting. After bacon & egg pie (using Seresin Estate organic eggs of course!) followed by date & caramel cake, and catching up on various vineyard, winery and marketing activities, some of the estate's barrel fermented and barrel aged wines are sampled. To finish off, the staff descend on a target vineyard block for some pruning. Each February, to coincide with the Wine Marlborough Festival, Seresin Estate invites a chef of international standing to host a series of dinners at our boatshed restaurant in Waterfall Bay, in the Marlborough Sounds.
Seresin Estate are committed to producing premium extra virgin olive oil. In the early nineties, plants from a specialist olive nursery in Tuscany, owned by the renowned Attilio Sonnoli were imported and planted to the Seresin Estate. A good selection of the classic varieties that make Tuscan extra virgin oil the best in the world were selected - Frantoio, Minerva, Leccino, Pendolino and Maurino. Each year Seresin bring out Maurizio Castelli, a Tuscan based wine and olive oil expert to Marlborough to supervise the harvest and pressing. By solely utilising fruit from groves surrounding the winery, the ultimate goals of individuality, quality and consistency are achieved
The UK Drink Tank team selected the Seresin Estate Leah Pinot Noir as their wine of the week after it achieved first or second place from all of the seven judges in a blind tasting of six wines from France, Italy, Spain, USA and New Zealand, "Whilst the All Blacks are heading home with tear-streaked cheeks and reputations in tatters, there is one New Zealander holding his head high this week. Michael Seresin, the founder, creator and dynamic force behind Seresin Estate can be rightly proud of his winning performance in the armit Drink Tank Taste-Off. The Webb Ellis Trophy will have to wait until 2011 but for those who wish to see New Zealand performing at its best, there can be no better way than cracking the cap on a bottle of Leah. Rich, generous and broad but with the definition and purity of great Pinot Noir for all to see, this is a brilliantly versatile, inspiring example of what can be produced in the land of the long white cloud!"
The spectacular view from the cellar door, across the terraced vineyards of the Home Block is the Estate's welcome mat. It's hard not to feel a connection to the winery. Visitors are greeted as old friends, offered great tastings, and an insight into the philosophy that is Seresin. Your experience with Seresin, whether visiting the winery cellar door, or appreciating the wines in good company, is certain to be a lasting one.
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