April 9, 2024

Cloudy Bay Peloras Sparkling Wine 

cloudy bay pelorus

Who makes it? 

Cloudy Bay Peloras is probably one of New Zealand’s most famous sparkling wines. It has been going from strength to strength since its first vintage in 1987. And why not? Since the 2000s, LVMH has been Cloudy Bay’s current owners. They are, of course, the makers of Moet & Chandon and Veuve Clicquot Champagne.  

For many years, it was Cloudy Bay that set the benchmark for Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. This was due to the expertise of Kevin Judd, who was Cloudy Bay’s first winemaker. Kevin Judd now has his own ground breaking New Zealand label, Greywacke.  

How do they make it? 

Cloudy Bay Pelorus is made from a blend of Marlborough Chardonnay (around 60%) and Pinot Noir. The fermented wine then goes through malolactic fermentation to soften the acid and to build complexity and roundness.  The wine also goes through battonage as well. That is where the dead yeast cells, or lees, is stirred through the wine regularly. This also adds complexity and a distinct creaminess of texture and flavour.  

This is a non-vintage wine so it is then blended with some reserve wine and bottled and then undergoes the second fermentation. The wine then spends 24 months at least on lees again before it is disgorged. 

What does it taste like? 

There is a toasted almond nuttiness that warms up the aromas of stonefruit, apple and grapefruit. A biscuity lemon shortbread rounds it all out. This is a dry fizz with a fuller body and fresh acid. This acid does make the Peloras on the lean and tight side. A firmness on the finish. In saying that though, it is well balanced and lingers in the mouth.  

What to drink it with? 

I would recommend that you enjoy Cloudy Bay Pelorus with seafood, chicken and vegetarian dishes. Grilled Scallops or a prawn risotto, or a white fish fillet served with fresh steamed veggies and maybe some flaked almonds. Or a cheese roulade. 

  Cheese 

A fresh cheese such as feta, chevre or a herbed cream cheese would be great. Of course, a white bloomy cheese is a classic match too. Brie especially.  

Quickie review « This is a rather good introduction to sparkling wine from New Zealand, crisp, flavourful and finely tuned. » 

Country of Origin:  Marlborough, New Zealand 
Tasting Date: January 2024 
Price:  NZ$40 | AU$40 | £30 
Drink: now – 3+ years  
Needs food: no 
Source: tasting 

Visit cloudybay for more. 

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