Mahi Alias Sauvignon Blanc 2018

Producer Information

Mahi is situated in Marlborough on the north-eastern corner of the South Island of New Zealand.  It was established by Brian and Nicola Bicknell in 2001, and in 2006 they purchased the historic winery giving Mahi a home and a sense of place.

The main aim of Mahi is to highlight the quality and diversity of individual vineyard sites in Marlborough.  The name Mahi means “our work, our craft” and it was chosen to show that wine is their work, passion and craft while also paying respect to the history of the land and tea o Maori.

Mahi produces multiple single vineyard wines as well as a regional Marlborough range .They source grapes from over eight different vineyard sites across the region having sought out the right sites, planted with the right varieties, a number of which are farmed biodynamically and are certified organic.

The primary emphasis for all Mahi wines is texture, that offer true palate satisfaction and compliment food. All the wines are made in a ‘hands off’ style to allow the true expression of the vineyard site to shine through.


The fruit for this wine comes from a small parcel in the Byrne vineyard, located in the Conder’s Bend area of Marlborough.

The vines are managed organically and are planted on gravels that would have once been a river bed. The stoney soils provide both drainage and heat retention which are essential for this cooler site.


The grapes were hand-picked, whole-cluster pressed and taken straight to French barriques without any chemical additions. It was fermented with indigenous yeast in the barrels, helping to add complexity and texture, without dominating the nose.

The wine was left on yeast lees for fifteen months, which were stirred regularly. This meant that the yeast added both savoury notes and also served to work as a natural fining agent. After time in barrique it was gently racked then bottled without fining.

Vintage Information

Such an early one, especially after the late start of the 2017 vintage.

We kicked into it on March 19, taking our Rosé from both the Brancott Valley and the Winery vineyard. This was our second earliest start and from then it was pretty well full-on for the next
19 days.

Picking for vintage 2018 finished for Mahi on April the 6th, our earliest, and a day before we started picking in 2012, proving once again that no two vintages are the same, something so good about making wine.

The winery worked really well with the great team this year coming from Tours, Champagne, Chile, Ireland, and New Zealand, but even though we had one extra person we certainly felt the pressure for two days in the middle of it all as we went to two shifts and wondered why we didn’t have even more.

Nice clean fruit across the varieties and great depth of flavour.

Tasting Note

The influence of wild yeast, vineyard site, barrel-ferment and time on lees makes for a rich and textural style of Sauvignon Blanc.

Fifteen months in French barriques has given this wine a well-rounded textural palate while still retaining freshness at the back of the palate.

Marlborough, New Zealand
Sauvignon Blanc
screw cap
6g/l TA

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