In the face of nature we are powerless. The 2011 vintage was our most challenging in our 28 vintage history at Lenswood. A cool, wet spring and summer made things difficult but the vines sailed through with no problems. Then in March we had 150mm of rain only a week before harvest.

Botrytis mould was there and flourished in the mild, wet conditions. I have always had faith in low crops, mature low vigour vines with plenty of air movement through the canopy but even this wasn’t enough to save us given the rain and extended drizzly weather which lasted for many days.

The good news is that with careful selction of the bunches to pich and then removal of all botrytis berries we were able to salvage some beautiful fruit.

Our 2011 Sauvignon blanc is our lowest in terms of alcohol (11.5%) and had a wonderful fresh acidity and pungent but still delicate fruit. I am thrilled with the result given how difficult it was to achieve.

Sadly no Pinot, Chardonnay or Riesling but that is life. We have had so many good years this was bound to happen at some point. It is the way it is working in the natural world.