Greywacke: The Evolution of a Master Winemaker

By Glen Frederiksen

You were the founding winemaker for Cloudy Bay, and (some say) single-handedly thrust the Sauvignon Blancs of New Zealand’s Marlborough region onto the international wine scene.

What do you do for an encore?

In the case of master winemaker Kevin Judd, you start up your own winery and try to better your earlier efforts. Judd founded Greywacke (pronounced “gray-wacky”) in 2009, and his initial releases received outstanding reviews from wine critics worldwide.

While Judd is still true to his love for Sauvignon Blanc, he has branched out to source and produce varietal bottlings from Pinot Noir, Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. Most grapes are farmed organically. It is Judd’s vision to have all vineyard sources Certified Organic posthaste.

The “Wild Sauvignon” bottling is especially intriguing. Eschewing the traditional style of stainless steel fermentation, Judd is trying to fashion a Kiwi version of white Bordeaux. The initial release, in the 2009 vintage, was awarded 93+ points by Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate. It is the kind of score only seen when Parker reviews the best chateaus in Bordeaux.

The new release is bound to be a worthy successor. Still a babe in the bottle, only time will tell how rich and complex this wine will become.

Our reviews:

2011 Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand

2010 Greywacke ‘Wild Sauvignon,’ Marlborough, New Zealand

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