Viticultural practices on the 5 1/2 hectare vineyard include medium density (2m x 2.2m) spacing, four cane vertical-shoot positioning, leaf plucking, and bunch thinning to ensure suitably spartan (2 tonnes/acre) yields for Pinot.
Winemaking style in the Coney Winery is still evolving within an overriding wish to be minimalist – allowing the fruit and terroir to speak for themselves. The Pinot Noir is typically de-stemmed without crushing, gently hand plunged during fermentation, fined with Isinglass and then aged in 30% new French oak for 10 months. Pizzicato is usually filtered prior to bottling at the end of March. The two riesling styles – Rallentando with around 5 gms of residual sugar and Ragtime with around 11 gms and some botrytised fruit are produced in roughly equal amounts representing the current evolution of New Zealand palates. For those with self-discipline, 5 – 10 year cellaring is recommended and will be rewarded with that elusive whiff of kerosine that characterises lovely dry Rieslings.
Coney has replaced cork with screwcaps in the belief that they are ideally suited to the aromatic varieties, promote consistency of flavour, and obviate any sterile discussion about corked bottles. Coney accepts, however, that while the scientific justification for stelvin over cork has been argued and won, at bottom, it rather depends on whether people prefer to be screwed or pulled.