JUDGES GO WILD FOR STONELEIGH WILD VALLEY AT IWC

Stoneleigh Wild Valley™ Sauvignon Blanc 2015 has won three prestigious trophies at the 2017 International Wine Challenge (IWC), as judges celebrate new expressions of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.

The three IWC Trophies were for ‘Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc’, ‘New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc’ and ‘New Zealand White’. The IWC is one of the world’s most influential wine competitions.

The three-tiered Trophy result highlights the IWC judges’ appreciation that great Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand can be more subdued and textural than the distinctive crisp aromatic style which has gained favour globally in the past decade.

Stoneleigh Wild Valley is wild fermented, using only the indigenous yeasts that are naturally present in the Stoneleigh vineyards and winery. The result is a nuanced wine, with well-integrated flavours of grapefruit and nectarines which are much more subtle than the usual bold expressions of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Stoneleigh Wild Valley also has added textural complexity, arising from a portion being barrel fermented.

“We are very pleased to see Stoneleigh Wild Valley Sauvignon Blanc recognised at the highest level,” says Stoneleigh winemaker Jamie Marfell.

“These three IWC trophies are very exciting, not just for the Stoneleigh team but for what is says about the directions in which we can take Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.”

“The IWC result shows the start of a trend towards more layered and interesting expressions of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. Such wines already exist at the high end of New Zealand wine, but with Stoneleigh Wild Valley, we are seeing interest in these complex styles among more accessible wines.”

“Also, that the award winning wine is from 2015 is notable because it recognises the ability of wild fermented and barrel fermented styles to develop positively with some bottle age. It entirely debunks the idea that New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc should only be enjoyed young.”

Stoneleigh Wild Valley range is available in Australia, New Zealand and in Sweden at a RRP of A$19.99, NZ$ 18.99 and 121 SEK respectively.

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

About Stoneleigh:
Stoneleigh, the leading premium still bottle wine brand in New Zealand, takes its wine style from the natural environment of Stoneleigh vineyards.

Stoneleigh vines are planted among famous sunstones, in ancient stony riverbed soils, renowned for delivering its wines with their quality and flavour. The Rapaura region is slightly warmer than other areas of Marlborough, which drives early ripening and allows grapes to be harvested earlier than those in most other regions. The result is a wine style; elegant and crisp, yet intense – the flavour of Stoneleigh.

Stoneleigh is committed to sustainable practices and is accredited under the Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand (SWNZ) scheme. The planting of more than 3,000 native trees, shrubs and flax on the Stoneleigh vineyard has been carried out to attract the Tui, a native nectar feeding bird, to return to the Marlborough region.

Enjoy Stoneleigh wines responsibly. www.stoneleigh.co.nz

About the International Wine Challenge
The International Wine Challenge (IWC) owned by William Reed Business Media is now in its 34th year. The IWC is accepted as the world's finest and most meticulously judged wine competition which assesses every wine blind and judges each for its faithfulness to style, region and vintage. Throughout the rigorous judging processes, each medal-winning wine is tasted on three separate occasions by at least 10 different judges and awards include medals (Trophy, Gold, Silver, Bronze) and Commended and Great Value awards. www.internationalwinechallenge.com

For more information please contact
Ruth Harris, Global Wine PR Manager, Pernod Ricard Winemakers +61 419 833 281 Ruth.Harris@pernod-ricard.com
STONELEIGH is a registered trademark of Pernod Ricard Winemakers New Zealand Limited.