On Giants’ Shoulders Pinot Noir – The Collaborator 2018




The Collaboration Series, Ben McNab – The Collaborator 2018


The Collaboration series is a bringing together of winemaking expertise and experience to make individual winemaker expressions of the On Giants’ Shoulders vineyard.


The Collaborator of 2018 was Ben McNab, a young up-and-coming winemaker and a new generation of winemaker in the region.  Fruit grown by us and shared with Ben to draw on his learnings and experiences to create his interpretation of the On Giants’ Shoulders vineyard.


Ben is a local boy at heart, born and raised in the Wairarapa.  Having caught the winemaking bug after a period in wine retail in Wellington. He followed this with harvests at Ata Rangi and Oregon, where he managed to woo his partner Jillian to join him in New Zealand.  After a two-year stint at Urlar in Gladstone, Ben joined Matahiwi as assistant winemaker.  He has represented the region in both the Young Viticulturist and Young Winemakers competition.  Drawing on his experiences, Ben has made a wine with the hallmarks of gentle extraction, purity of fruit and plentiful spice.


Alcohol                                12.9%

pH                                        3.70

T.A.                                      5.5g/L

Harvest                               14.03.18 – 18.03.18

Bottles Produced                900


A blend of four clones, Abel, 828, UCD5 and AM10/5, the fruit was hand-harvested in mid-March by Ben, Jillian and a small crew of friends and family.  The fruit was hand-sorted in the winery, with 27% whole clusters included in the fermenter.  Fermentation started spontaneously after a number of days of cool soak, before inoculation midway through ferment.  Extraction was exceedingly gently, with the wine being pressed after 19 days in skins.  Pressed to three barrels; one of which was new, the wine aged for 12 months in French oak.  Blended in March 2019, the wine rested for six months, after which it was given a light fining and filtration prior to bottling in September 2019.

Reviews (1)


  1. Michael Cooper – Wine Journalist


    The youthful 2018 vintage was hand-picked and matured for a year in French oak casks (33 per cent new). Ruby hued, with a scented, slightly nutty bouquet, it is medium-bodied and supple, with gentle, ripe cherry, plum and spice flavours and a finely textured finish. Open 2022+.

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