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edited by Sue Courtney

Wine Reviews - Pinot Gris
2010 & 2009 vintages
by Sue Courtney
Last Updated 22 Aug 2014

Although some of these tasting notes may be found elsewhere on this site, this page brings together most of my Pinot Gris notes, listed alphabetically by Producer. Click here for rating systems and abbreviations.

Click here for a commentary on Pinot Gris in New Zealand.

[2013/12/11] [2010] [2009] [2008/2007] [2006/2005/2004][2003 and older][index]

2010 Vintage [top] [index]

Alexia Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Soft and fruity, pear and apple with hints of vanilla and a tickle of ginger and richness of texture. Very varietal on nose - has that distinctive pear drop and vanillla with a hint of musk. 13.5% alc. $17.99. 15Oct2010.
A concentrated, rich-tasting wine with a smidgen of oak that adds textural warmth and depth to the colour but doesn't detract from the juicy fresh fruit salad flavours. There's a sprinkle of exotic spice with a suggestion of flower musk on the lingering finish, which is jut off dry. 13.5% alc. $16.99. 2May2012.

Astrolabe Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Tasted at room temperature the aromas are of peardrops and it seems a little muted in the palate with white mushroom flavours to the fore and some tarragon nuances too. Fruit is in the pear/apple/quince spectrum. Just lacks a little excitement at first but builds up with spice and mandarin zest. When chilled the wine's bouquet is fruiter and brighter and ripe fruit and tropical fruit salad flavours fill the palate with pink guava and cherimoya adding to the fruity array. Medium in style and best served chilled. 13.5% alc. $21. 3Feb2010.

Boundary Vineyards Paper Lane Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Light gold coloured, aromatic and spicy with a hint of orange zest to the scent and flavours that are juicy and intense with concentration, richness and the fruitiness of ripe heritage pears, it finishes dry with lingering flavours of spiced apple and pear. 14% alc. $18.99. 14Sep2011.

Cable Station Road Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) With a touch of gold to the hue, this is vibrant and tasty with lots of delicious fruit heading towards tropical in spectrum and a little breadiness coming through. Rich, full-bodied and long with lovely palate weight, if you don't like Pinot Gris this will change your mind. Awatere fruit. 13.8% alc. $15. 17Aug2011.

Clark Estate Marlborough Single Vineyard Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Moderate golden hue. There's a playdough or slightly vegetal scent, a hint of tropical fruit. Dry in the palate, crisp, lively, zesty and refreshing, tropical fruit, the merest suggestion of passionfruit, quince and citrus peel. Lovely acid balance to the fruit and the expansive finish is long and pleasing with orange blossom. 5.2 g/l rs. 14% alc. $20.00. 30Aug2012.

Couper's Shed Hawkes Bay Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) A pale gold wine with a fruity/floral aroma that's delicate and clean and soft apple and pear flavours, a little tingle of gingery zest and a slightly phenolic edge balanced by a touch of sweetness. A change in style from the luscious, gold medal winning 2009. 14% alc. $15.99. 29Feb2012.
Light gold, aromatic but not definitive, the oily fragrance is oily and floral with hints of apricot. Lovely lift and brightness to palate with moderate acidity and textural richness. There are hints of viognier-like apricots and nuts and exotic gewurz-like musky floral nuances and 5-spice, but the lingering finish is typical pinot gris apple strudel. 14% alc. $18.99. 25Apr2012.

Discovery Point 'Rich Dry' Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) The 100% wild yeast ferment (in tank) imparts a funky character to the scent – like hops or malt or, as Stephen alluded to, 'dack'. Extended aging on yeast lees is very obvious to the taste, adding a brew-like character to the predominant apple and pear. A full-bodied wine, it finishes dry and savoury with a mouth-coating vinous richness. 13.5% alc. $17.99. 25May2011.

Distant Land Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Has a slight waxy veneer to the floral, nectar-like scents. At first it seems like one of those middle of the pack Pinot Gris tending towards dry with pear, quince and a touch of spice. Then a brightness to the finish which is actually quite nice. Hint of nectarine creeping in. There's some grapefruit on the finish and a touch of sweetness. I like the interesting contrast this playful wine gives. A good match to chicken breasts stuffed with pear, roasted kumara or smoked fish pate. 14% alc. 8 g/l rs. $19 13Apr2011.
Light gold coloured with a fruit-driven aroma of stonefruit and melon with a lusciousness infusing the scent, like fresh fruit nectar. Texturally delicious, with a fruity brightness. and a nice spicy influence coming through, perhaps even a hint of ginger and an exciting hint of tarragon. 14% alc. $19. 17Aug2011.

Dry River Martinborough Pinot Gris 2010 (c) Light golden coloured with scents of spiced apple, vanilla biscuits and a delicate hint of tangelo. A dryish wine, quite creamy, with a delicate spicy character - a compote of pear with five spice and orange zest. A rich, textural wine yet it has a light step. It has a refinement and quality about it and the finish – it' so looong. The dryness, the spicy twist, the bittersweet citrus makes it salivating and moreish. A true style icon. 13.5% alc. 15 g/l rs. $55. 19Jul2011.

Esk Valley Hawkes Bay Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Light lemon gold with a perfumed, juicy apple and pear fruit salad aroma. Spicy, warm textured and rich, lovely palate weight, hints of stonefruit and just a touch of sweetness with muskmelon on the finish. Delicious. 13% alc. 17Aug2011.

Greywacke Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) A subtle but fleshy aroma with tingles of zest. Texturally intriguing, some viscosity here. Bright fruity flavours with a touch of peach joining juicy pear. A fruit-fleshy wine with time on yeast lees enhancing the textural intensity, there's a savoury undercurrent then nuances of grapefruit emerge on the finish. 50% wild ferment in old French oak. 14.5% alc. 8.5 g/l rs. $25.45. 8Oct2011.

Hawkshead Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Lovely fruity scent – fruit salad, stonefruit, melon as well as a little floral – very appealing. Quite fruity to the taste in a rich, serious way with peach, pear, cherimoya, a touch of passionfruit and subtle biscuity spice in the backgrounds. Smooth, creamy and very nice. Fruit expands as it lingers. Try with roast kumara or smoked fish pate.12.8% alc. 6.7 g.l rs. $26. 13Apr2011.

Hyperion Phoebe Matakana Pinot Gris 2010 (D) There's an earthy and slightly herbal nuance to the otherwise neutral scent. Spicy to the taste and a floral inflection, some lovely anise-like herbs coming through with sweet apple pie and a mealy savouriness giving the wine balance. 14% alc. $23. 29Mar2011.

Kapiro Vineyard Kerikeri Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Distinctly pears on the nose with a tickle of musk and some spice and even though it seems off dry with an oily texture on first tasting it has quite a steely finish. Spicy and zesty with expansive mouthfeel, it is best served chilled. 13% alc. $22.00. 16Sep2011.

Karikari Estate Calypso Northland Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) A lovely ripe-fruited gris with softness and fullness to the texture. It’s crammed with juicy peach, red apples and pear with underlying sweet citrus zest and a touch of exotic spice. Rich and powerful with a creamy finish but at the same time fresh and clean. Fruit comes from Paewhenua Island in Northland. 14.5% alc. $22. 28Feb2011.

Kumeu River Kumeu Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Straw gold. Nuts and pears on the bouquet and a hint of butterscotch in the palate, possibly from the wild yeast ferment and partial malo. With mid palate softness, tropical fruit sweetness, a lingering creamed nut finish and a pleasing touch of strudel spice, it is a lovely sophisticated, off dry style. 13% alc. $31.99. 6Jun2012.

Kurow Pasquale Waitake Valley Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) This has a classic pear drop aroma enhanced with a hint of honey-like nectar and peach and the flavours definitely carry on the honeyed sweetness theme. It's bright and fruity with a moderately full body and an aftertaste that simply hums with juicy ripe orchard fruit and spice. There's a lovely thread of fines herbes and the most delicate hint of five spice and orange zest. And when it is chilled, more citrus zest flavours come through. 14% alc. $27. 2Mar2011.

Kurow Village Penny Gold Waitaki Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Smoky on the nose - definitely a Kurow Valley wood fire thing going on here. In the mouth it's textural and luscious with a seductive sweetness. Medium in style with a smoky fume nuance, the fruit is fleshy and ripe and exotic in nature, and the lasting impression is dry. 12.5% alc. $24. 17Aug2011.

Lansdowne Estate Masterton Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Bright golden yellow. There's a subtle smokiness to the scent that's really quite classical quince, and perhaps melon, nature. A dry styled wine win and expansive richness to the flavour with the quince and melon from the bouquet coming through with a subtle nuance of earthy spices (sumac comes to mind) and lanolin. Some savoury notes with a lemon/ butter / pineapple sage finish. Matched to pork slices coated with five spice powder and browned. Pan deglazed with a light chardonnay, meat placed atop sliced pear in the casserole dish then slices of blue cheese and the pan deglazements and leaves of pineapple sage. Lovely sophisticated wine. Very good match. 14% alc. 6Apr2014.

Lawsons Dry Hills Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) A smoky aura to the nutty scents and a smooth, rich, creamy palate full of peach nectar, pear, citrus, vanilla and spice. A dry wine with lovely textural complexity, heading to the cusp of oily, and finishing clean. Sophisticated and classy. 4.5 stars. 14% alc. 8.5 g/l rs. $26. 22Nov2010.
Shiny gold. Hints of butterscotch on the nose with oak adding savouriness to the orchard fruit scent. It smells a little like Chardonnay but the moderate sweetness in palate says no. A textural, Pinot Gris with subtle oak and loads of apple strudel flavours, finishing with a hint of vanilla and lemon chantilly cream. 14% alc. $19.99. 18May2011.
Full of juicy melon and pear with a squeeze of citrus and a sprinkle of strudel spices, it's a charming off dry style with a softness to the backbone even though the fruit is vibrant and fresh. There's a beguiling floral nuance and something reminiscent pink-iced buns, this beautifully ripe wine has a smooth slippery texture and subtle oak influence too. 14.5% alc. $29.99. 21Nov2012.

Lobster Reef Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Spicy and a little musky on the nose and these characters carry through to the vibrant palate. Juicy and fresh with appealing orchard fruit flavours, a delicate hint of musk and a flourish of spice on the finish. Very appealing.13.8% alc. $18. 17Aug2011.

Main Divide Waipara Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Strong grapefruit scent – freshly squeezed grapefruit from my tree with the vibrancy this bittersweet fruit delivers. The grapefruit literally zings into the palate – it's texturally the best so far, with a lovely savoury backbone that's like cornbread and honey. Characteristic spitz and the fruit on the finish is like poached pears in spice-infused wine – sweet endings – very nice. 13.5% alc. $19.95.13Apr2011.
A medium wine in sweetness level, juicy and fruity - like Watties fruit salad. There's a lushness to the texture; flavours of apple, melon, mandarin, grapefruit and pear, and that characteristic spritz, a hallmark of this producer's wines, cuts right through the fat. The second label of Pegasus Bay and like all this producer's wines, it is characteristically delicious. 13.5% alc. $15.99 20Apr2011.
Light gold coloured with an aromatic, citrussy scent, but such a surprise when you taste because it's sprightly, spritzy and zesty. Flavours are apple juice, honeysuckle and ginger with a vanilla pod infusion. Fresh and refreshing, but not what you expect. 13.5% alc. $16.99. 6Jul2011.

Man O War Ponui Is Waiheke Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) There's a spritz to the texture of this fresh, young thing. Full of summer orchard fruit with peach, pear, spice and honeyed cream, it has well-balanced sweetness and softness and roundness to the ripe and much fuller finish. Succulent and moreish. 14% alc. $19.99. 9Feb2011.
Ripe apple and strudel spice scents and warm and bready in palate with a lovely slippery texture and spice backnotes balancing the fruity sweetness. Medium to full-bodied in style, it's much colder than when we tasted it two weeks ago but still struts its stuff when well chilled. 14% alc. $19.99. 23Feb2011.
Very pale in appearance with an intriguing scent reminiscent of apple strudel and mineral bath salts and a warm, bready undercurrent to the rich, rounded flavours of apple and pear with an infusion of anisey herbs, a touch of honey and a subtle hint of tangelo zest. Just off dry in sweetness level, it showed very well tonight.12.5% alc. $19.99 4May2011.

Momo Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Juicy, spicy and zesty with fruit flavours like fresh almost-ripe pears picked from the tree. A little grainy in texture with a zing of citrus and a nice touch of zest and ginger and some nice earthy, mushroom tones too making it ideal to match to chicken and mushroom pie. A touch of fruit-rupe sweetness balances the savouriness nicely; perhaps a vanilla infusion to the finish. Quite bready and mealy, which enhances the richness and complexity. 50% barrel ferment too. 14.5% alc. $23. 1Feb2010.

Moncellier Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 Pear essence infuses into the delicate nutty aromas while pear, quince and vanilla permeates the palate. Quite rounded, full-bodied and rich with abundant apple flavours and warmth to the dry finish. 3 stars. 13.5% alc. $25. 22Nov2010.

Morepork Rosemary's Reserve Northland Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Now this is an interesting wine. Lots of classic Pinot Gris aromas of pears and Nashi with some flower nectar coming through too, the taste starts with a rush of lusciousness but finishes decidedly dry, begging you to take another mouthful. But the thing that's intriguing is the hint of tarragon that lingers with tropical fruit on the finish. I liked it 13.5 $0.00 26Sep2010.

Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Golden in colour with musk and fresh pear aromatics, the flavours are full and bright with concentrated pear and a tinge of apricot and orange zest. Off dry (11 g/L rs) with a long, tasty finish. 14% alc. $19.99. 30Mar2011.

Mt Hector Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) White gold hue. Floral aromas with a flinty edge and flavours of juicy apple, sweet pear, fleshy white peach and an infusion of flower nectar. With subtle spice, a smooth texture, soft acidity and a touch of sweetness, it really is quite appealing. 13% alc. $11.99. 19Jan2011.

Mud House South Island Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Aromas of fruit salad, tropical fruit and melon lead into the full-bodied textural palate that's crammed with lovely tropical fruit flavours, a mealy infusion and a zesty flourish to the finish. Dry in style with an aura of sophistication and finesse.14% alc. $22. 17Aug2011.
Light gold coloured and fragrant smelling with a hint of flower musk and a suggestion of spiced pear. Ripe and juicy tasting with richness and texture to the unctuous pear flavours, it has lovely almost creamy undercurrent from aging on yeast lees and tangy lemon cream biscuits on the finish. A value-packed blend of Marlborough, Waipara and Nelson fruit. 14% alc. $14.99. 16Nov2011.

Mud House The Home Block Vineyard Waipara Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) With a bouquet of honeysuckle, citrus and tarragon and delicate flavours of citrus and pear, this bright, lifted wine is slippery in texture with an infusion of tarragon and spice and a warm, clean finish. A very refined wine, just off dry and takes chilling well. 14.5% alc. $19.99. 25Nov2010.
A tangy wine that tastes just like the Pinot Gris grapes it is made from with an infusion of citrus and a lovely tang of gingery zest. It has a slightly fumé backbone and a flinty finish, and while fairly dry it has just enough sweetness to round out the edges. 14.5% alc. $19.99. 9Feb2011.

Neudorf Moutere Pinot Gris 2010 Fragrant, slightly herbal, bittersweet citrus zest and a hint of rose petal too all add to the allure of the bouquet. Some phenolics in palate add grip, but in is the clean, fresh, fruit purity that shines through to make this wine a star. There's red apple, pear, stonefruit and some bready mealy characters coming through. Then a lovely nuance of tarragon that imparts delight to the aftertaste, that is just off-dry. 5 stars. 13.5% alc. 11.6 g/l rs. $29. 22Nov2010.

Ohau Gravels Ohau Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Floral and spice aromas with apple, pear and pineapple fruit and spicy and zesty to the taste with richness and weight to the backbone, bright fruit and a tickle of spritz / ginger-like zest. The flavours are mouthwatering, even a suggestion of passionfruit comes through, and while the fruit suggests a little sweetness, the wine seems to finish much drier with its balanced acidity and typical winey savouriness from a small portion of barrel ferment and an extended time on yeast lees. 11.8 g/l rs. 13% alc. $23.95. 3Feb2011.

OBV Omaha Bay Pinot Gris 2010- Matakana (sc) Golden hued with grilled peach infusing the lightly smoky bouquet and a mellow aura to the taste with intriguing mushroom notes coming to mind. Underlying zingy acidity pulsates through and stonefruit fleshes out the rich, dry, savoury finish. A full-bodied style and a little atypical for Pinot Gris. 13% alc. $25.99. 6Aug2014.

Opawa Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 Pale in appearance. Rich nutty scents dominate the subtle pear drop fragrance. More classical Pinot Gris flavours dominated entirely by pear. Hints of vanilla on the finish; apple skin too. Creamy in texture with reasonable weight with a spicy, mushroomy note to the finish. Long and clean. 4 stars. 13% alc. $23. 26Nov2010.

Osawa Flying Sheep Hawkes Bay Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Classic aromas of apples and pears follow through to the warmly textured palate with a touch of ginger to tickle the top of the tongue and a gentle savoury depth to the finish. Has texture and richness, and a sage-like nuance to the finish, but just lacks the fruity brightness of some of the others. 14.5% alc. $22.99. 8Oct2011.

Palliser Martinborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Tasted at room temperature: on the nose there it seems a little earthy with kiddy's playdough scents but the fruit displays its beauty in the palate. Pear and apple are infused with peach and a hint of orange zest adds brightness and length to the spicy finish. I like the finish better than the start – the fruit starts to swell in flavour with passionfruit coming through too. Chilling enhances this wine intensely. There's a juicy undercurrent – mandarin comes to mind – and spiced apple and pear. It's quite dry with a pleasing mealy richness. 13.5% alc. $27.50. 3Feb2010.

Peregrine Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Pale gold coloured with a citrus fragrance, in the mouth it initially gives the impression of soft acidity with sweet citrus, orange blossom, honeysuckle and tropical fruit. But there's a zesty tickle to the finish and a savouriness emerging as the flavours linger. 14% alc. $25.99. 13Jul2011.

Pukeko Vineyards White Tail Bay of Islands Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Quite unbalanced and just a little too sweet - pears, apples and honey come to mind. I find it a little cloying. It must be served chilled. 12.5% alc. $22.00. 16Sep2011.

Richmond Plains Nelson Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Apple peel, lemon pith, and slight honey/pollen-like scents, later sweet apple sauce. Moderately luscious to the taste with the honey/pollen even richer. It’s like an orange curd with its sweet acidity and creamy texture, with a vanilla and spice biscuit toastiness to the finish. Nice but needs the right food. Chilling becomes it.14.5% alc. 20 g/l rs. $20. 21Jan2011.

Rockburn Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010 Citrus aromas follow through to the palate with more than a hint of grapefruit - perhaps a barrel-fermented style. Ripe and juicy, clean, fresh and bright with the flavours heading towards apricot and a touch of rose musk too. Then a very appealing nuance of tarragon that lingers on finish. Flavoursome and tangy. Delicious to drink and a vibrant match to pork with orange and ginger. 4.5 stars. 14% alc. 9.7 g/l rs. $24. 22Nov2010.

Sacred Hill Halo Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Lightly perfumed with strudel spice, apple and pear, this is dry and tangy with grape and Nashi pear flavours, a steely backbone, warmth and richness to the mid-palate and length to the finish. 14% alc. $19.99. 21Sep2011.

Saint Clair Godfrey's Reserve Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Has a smoky nuance to the scent but it is vibrantly fruity in palate with all the characteristic Pinot Gris traits of ripe apple and juicy pear, but better still it has a lovely infusion of fines herbes – tarragon, chervil – which leave behind a delicate hint of anise. When tasted along side the Hawkshead, it seems a little phenolic, but it is the beter of the comparison pair. 14% alc. $27. 13Apr2011.

Saint Clair Pioneer Block 5 Bull Block Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Orange blossoms, delicate five-spice and pear drops emanate from the bouquet. Heading towards the medium sweet spectrum, this is textural and ripe and seamless in its flow with flavours of freshly squeezed citrus, five-spice, honeysuckle pear and nuances of pineapple sage than adds Ying to the Yang. Versatile PG, nice to drink, food friendly and the leftovers were outstanding with French Onion Soup. 13.5% alc. 19.2 g/l rs. $23.50. 11Jul2011.

Selaks Heritage Reserve Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Smelling of apple strudel – it's warm and bready. The flavours are vibrant and fruity and the texture is warm. Full-bodied - perhaps oak is adding some complexity – and the finish is long. 14% alc. $20. 17Aug2011.

Shingle Peak Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) There's depth to the warmed honey and baked apple scent with a waft of cinnamon and cardamon spice. An unctuous style with a honeyed sweetness and ripe pear and apple strudel flavours, it seems to have subtle nuances reminiscent of Gewurz, yet turn direction becoming quite nutty and finishing dry. Lovely balance. Exiting price too. 14% alc. $11.99. 23Feb2011.

Soljans Kumeu Pinot Gris 2010 Slightly pink in hue. A sweeter wine with a soft feel and apple and pear fruit infused with orange zest. Texturally pleasing with a touch of viscosity, it leaves behind a fresh, clean fruity flavours with some hints of citrus and tropical fruit and a suggestion of rose petal too. Can be enjoyed as a beverage wine and delicious with a range of food too. 4 stars. 13.5% alc. 10.6 g/l rs. $19. 22Nov2010.

Spy Valley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 While it seemed a little spritzy on first opening, the wine settled down to become a smooth, rounded drop. Juicy apple and pear tinged with sweet citrus, with a savoury nutty undercurrent and a luscious richness with the heady alcohol adding warmth to the creamed apple finish. Low in acidity, moderate phenolics, high-powered finish. A portion fermented in old oak with mlf. 14% alc. $20. 16Nov2010.

Sugar Loaf Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Pear and lemon zest on nose. Hints of apple too. Bright on entry to the palate with a vanillin softness coming through. Off dry with a rounded finish that intensifies as it lingers. Stylish. 14% alc. $17. 21Jan2011.

Swallows Crossing Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) This light lemon gold wine is ultra-fruity on the nose, giving up citrus, lemon grass and a touch of port wine magnolia. It seems moderately dry when served well chilled, and while tight on entry to the palate, it opens up beautifully to show the purity of fruit, and it becomes more textured and creamy and spicy as the wine warms up. From a vineyard in Tarras. 13.5% alc. $21.99. 20Jul2011.

Tatty Bogler Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Straw gold. A perfume of preserved pears and gentle although quite concentrated flavours, warm and textural, lightly viscous, sweet spices, vanilla, poached pears, a twist of bitter lemon adds tang to the end. Classic off-dry Pinot Gris and works well with chicken marinated in orange juice, zest, coriander, cumin, salt and pepper 17.3 g/l rs. 13.5% alc. $25.00. 30Aug2012.

Te Mania Nelson Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Classically gris on the nose with ripe pear and an infusion of orange zest. A little phenolic on the first taste, but this gives it structure and grip, and then the texture heads towards oily. Orchard fruit, a hint of creaming soda, flavours of apple and pear and a savoury depth. Stylish and reasonably dry. 14% alc. 7.5 g/l rs. $22. 11Jul2011.

Ti Point Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 Richly scented white honey, orange blossom and pear. Quite creamy in palate but with a slight phenolic, steely edge that gives the wine an impression of being dry with a tickle of ginger and a hint of orange zest. A food wine rather than a beverage wine – and in fact it is bone dry. 3 stars. 13.5% alc. $21.90. 22Nov2010.

Tohu Nelson Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Tasted at room temperature there is classic pear and stone fruit on the nose and sweet, ripe, juicy flavours heading towards nectarine in the palate. It has soft acidity and bright fresh fruity flavours with a nice touch of sweetness and a biscuity finish with mealy noes in the background. When chilled, it seems much drier. There's a lovely tingle of apple acidity, greengage plums and an underlying herbaceous edge. 14% alc. $22. 3Feb2010.

Triplebank Awatere Valley Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Light gold coloured with a delicate heady rose petal scent, this is off dry, warm and textural with bright citrus and juicy tropical fruit flavours toning down on the more creamy finish with the softness of pear and a recurring tingle of spice pulsating through. 13% alc. $22.99. 31Aug2011.

Tupari Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Perfumed and floral, immediately much softer acidity – this is a smooth, rounded wine with a ginger-like zing and rich flavours of apple, stonefruit and pears with estery pink bubblegum notes. Classic in style, it is medium-bodied with a long bright finish. Grapes from the upper Awatere and the winemaker is Glen Thomas. 14.5% alc. $25.99. 23Feb2011.

Urlar Gladstone Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Here's a wine that tastes like Chardonnay but is not a Chardonnay. It is Pinot Gris for Chardonnay lovers; fermented in old oak with extended time on yeast lees that gives it a richness and full-bodied complexity. There's mellow oak and stonefruit on the nose, perhaps a touch of spicy pears then in the palate stonefruit and orange, five spice, nuts and bready nuances. With its lovely touch of oak, it's a beautiful wine and while a big wine for Pinot Gris, most enjoyable. Matched to pork medallions, coated in five spice, quickly pan-fried on one side, turned over, then adorned with zest of an orange and its juice, then a splash of the wine. 2.0 g/l rs. 13.5% alc. $28.00. 13Apr2012.

West Brook Marlborough Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) Aromatic with juicy tropical fruit, hints of flowers and pineapple on the nose, with its oily mouthfeel and richness and luscious, juicy tropical fruit flavours, it really goes down quite easily. It seems a little sweet than the Waimauku wine and the texture of this wine really appeals together with exotic spices. Partially oak fermented. Speaking of Waimauku, there is 13% Waimauku fruit in this wine. 13% alc. 18g/l rs. $21.90. 29Aug2010.

West Brook Waimauku Pinot Gris 2010 (sc) A pretty wine with tangelo honey (as in lemon honey made with tangelos) and ginger-like aromatic spices and just enough sweetness in the palate to soften any hard edges. The texture adds to this wine's appeal. A wine for serious PG drinkers. Partially oak fermented and doesn't really hint of the residual sweetness. 13.4% alc. 18g/l rs. $25.90. 29Aug2010.
Perfumed and aromatic at around 12 degrees C, this is a rich, full-boided style with with lusciousness to the sweet late season pear, yellow peach and honeysuckle flavours with an infusion of apple strudel spices that adds a pleasing zing. The mouthfeel is rounded and the finish is juicy and long. Soft acidity makes this immediately approachable both at room temperature and chilled to around 9 degrees. 13.4% alc. 18g/l rs. $26.00. 28Jan2012.
Light gold. Aromatic, flinty, nutty, an infusion of sweet citrus. A sweetish wine harnessed by the ginger-infused spices and lively citrus zest. Honey-drizzled pear, orange and melon, fruit salad, pear, melon, a touch of peach. Good with food - we had chicken in a Moroccan-spiced orange marinade. 18 g/l rs. 13.4% alc. $26.00. 30Aug2012.

2009 Vintage [top] [index]

12000 Miles Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A warm, oily wine with a hint of vanilla to the aromatic scent and a little hot spice, with a ginger-like tingle, infusing the concentrated, full-bodied flavour. Apricot, apples, pears, honey and lovely lift to finish with a hint of Turkish Delight. 14.8% alc. $10.99 20Apr2011.
Light gold with a sweet melon aroma, this is a powerful wine in the mouth. It's off dry and textural with flavours of fruit salad, custard, peaches and pear and the mouth-coating finish is pleasing. 14.8% alc. $10.99. 3Aug2011.

36 Bottles Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Pale straw gold. Heady aromatics of apricot, nut bread and spice but full of varietal pear flavours with a glycerolic texture and a nutty undercurrent. Seems warm from the alcohol and there's a hint of vanilla to the finish. 14% alc. $26.99. 9Dec2009.
Perfumed and floral, smelling brightly aromatic but with flavours that are soft and acidity that is gentle. With pears, ripe apple, textural richness and a nice edge of sweetness to balance the phenolics, this is enjoyable Pinot Gris. 14.1% alc. Screwcap. $26.99. 18Aug2010.

Akarua Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 Very pale. Youthful scents of citrus and pears, toffee apple, feijoa and a hint of truffle too. Spicy in palate, high-toned and lifted, with flavours of lemon honey drink making it seem a little Riesling-like in style. Perhaps some botrytis is responsible for the toffee notes on the finish, which is tangy and long with richness to the length. 3.5 stars. 13.5% alc. $25.50. 23Nov2010.

Bald Hills Pigeon Rocks Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A powerful aroma with nuances of grapefruit and a bready richness, the power continues through to the palate. An 'alternate' pinot gris in some respects, it's dry, it's fruity, it's rich, it's savoury, it's heady and seems almost waxy. I wonder whether it has some botrytis. 14.32% alc. $25.00. 29Nov2011.

Blackenbrook Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) So fragrant, so aromatic with scents reminiscent of freshly cracked macadamia nuts and freshly cut ripe apricot, in a blind tasting it easy to think this wine is something other than Pinot Gris , viognier, for example, unless you knew you had an Alsace wine in the mix. In the mouth this wine seduces with its gorgeous seamless texture that flows across the tongue and coats the insides of the cheeks. It's a full-bodied wine that seems rich and luscious but finishes dry with vanilla, macadamia and apricot the lasting memory. 15% alc. $23.90. 20Nov2009.

Bronte by Rimu Grove Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Golden in colour and medium sweetness with a honeyed taste, which makes me think some botrytis-affected grapes have added to the richness and weight. Honeysuckle, spice and delicate hints of stonefruit fill the bouquet and the juicy, fresh flavours are reminiscent of toffee apple with a touch of spice and a squeeze of tangelo. If it didn't have the balancing winey savouriness, it could almost be a late harvest wine - but I think it's best enjoyed, nicely chilled, as an aperitif. 15% was aged in oak in four months and all components were aged on lees. 13% alc. 12 g/l rs. $22. 8Oct2010.

Burnt Spur Martinborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) An oak-touched, wild yeast fermented style, perhaps. Nutty, savoury, warm and rich - moderately low tones with high spiky punk rocker accents that hide the girly sweetness. of the four this is the most 'serious' wine but has a luscious curvaceousness. There's a nice touch of citrussy sweetness adding highlights to the flavours that are reminiscent of pears cooked with a little spice. 13.5% alc. $22. 1Jun2010.

Butterfish Bay Northland Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Young, fresh and spicy, a medium sweet style with aromas and flavours of apples, apricots and juicy late season pear with a citrussy twist and a touch of exotic spice. Lightly creamy in texture, just off dry, straight up and down Pinot Gris - but from where? Could easily be Marlborough, but in fact it’s from over a 1,000 miles north. There’s tropical fruit singing in the background and a biscuity richness to the lime-infused backbone. Mouthfilling and rich - a showy wine with richness, length and textural complexity. 13.5% alc. $27.95. 13Aug2009.

Catalina Sounds Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Soft and heady with pear and musk scents. Quite a fat wine, leesy, bready, youthful, perhaps some oak (yes 4%), with good acid drive pulsating through the finish. On its own, at this stage of its life, it ned a little more time. The acid drive of the wine will match to buttery dishes. 10Mar2010.

Chard Farm Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 Light yellow gold. Hint of smoke to the nutty scent. Weighty palate, just off dry with juicy pear and stonefruit. Subtle in its fruit expression yet full and long in its mouthfilling flavours with a lovely smooth slippery texture. Delicious spicy. Rich and long. Very good. 4 stars. 13.5% alc. $27. 26Nov2010.

Clos St William Waipara Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light gold in colour with a floral bouquet tinged with apple, this has vibrant, juicy, freshly made fruit salad flavours of apple, peach and pear with a touch of honey on the spicy finish that hints of ginger and citrus zest. There's a touch of sweetness, the aftertaste is clean, it takes chilling well and is very drinkable. Very impressive. 13.5% alc. $19.99. 24Nov2010.
A little hint of butterscotch on the nose and more so in the palate, with lovely fruit flavours of 'just ripe' pears, freshly plucked peaches and a touch of spice. A very impressive wine and while not overly sweet, it's juicy, rich and luscious and I wonder if a smidgen of oak is adding to the complexity and weight. 13.5% alc. $19.99. 9Feb2011.
A luscious, concentrated and powerful expression of a medium style with nuance of rose petals, musk, and spice and baked pears. Harmonious in delivery, it mimics the wines we have tasted from Alsace. 13.5% alc. $19.99. 21Dec2011.
Golden coloured with a soft creamy butterscotch richness to the bouquet. Honeyed and luscious tasting with seductive sweetness balanced by vibrant fresh fruit salad flavours with a citrus syrup and a spicy poached pear finish. Almost irresistible. 13.5% alc. $19.99. 2May2012.

Couper's Shed Hawke's Bay Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light golden in colour, delicate scents of warm nuts and apricot and beautiful clean and focussed flavours of apricot and biscuit spices. The texture is silky and smooth and with some viscosity and heat to the finish, it's could fool some people into thinking it is Viognier. It fooled me. A Pinot Gris that will seduce even ardent detractors of this variety. 14% alc. $17.99. 25Nov2009.

Culley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light yellow gold in colour and a little floral on the nose, this is a drier wine (than the Greystone) and is classically Pinot Gris with signature flavours of pears and spice, with a medium-weight palate and a gentle finish that has warmth and richness. Neil Culley's personal label from Cable Bay. 13.5% alc. $12.99. 7Oct2009.

Distant Land Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Fragrant, pretty, gris-like aromatics of vanilla-infused pear with a squeeze of lime and a lovely smooth rounded texture with an enveloping mouthfeel. Sweet but not sweet with white flowers, bready savoury nuances and a brightness of apple and lime lingering gently on the finish. A lovely Pinot Gris - well-balanced, textural - exactly what it should be. 13.5% alc. $20. 9Oct2009.

Dry River Martinborough Pinot Gris 2009 (c) Delicately floral on the nose this is full and rich in the palate with a white flower delicacy. A honeyed sweetness comes through with a spicy richness, hints of apple and orange zest, and the finish is nutty and long. A wine to nurture in the cellar where it will blossom and be at its best in 5-7 years time. NZ’s greatest Pinot Gris. 14% alc. $57.99. 11Aug2010.

Durvillea Marlborough Pinot Grigio 2009 (sc) Crisp apple flavours that invoke memories of stealing apples in the orchard and the apples were not quite ripe - and because of this I;ve never been a huge apple fan. Has a firm bite, a momentary suggestion of sweetness an astringent, drying finish and then a slightly mellow aftertaste. This is a wine that improves in the bottle the next couple of days after opening with a light vanilla touch to the orchard fruit flavours. 14% alc. $15. 1Jun2010.

Frizzell Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A light citrussy aroma - think sherbet lollies. A little phenolic and dryish to the taste with a slightly oily texture, sherbet-like fruit - citrus, apple, vanilla and a hint of spice. Fairly neutral but a good food wine - try with butternut pasta. 13% alc. $21.99. 27May2010.

Gibbston Valley Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A little phenolic to start but intensifying in richness, weight and mouthfeel, it's a dry style with flavours of Nashi pear, hints of ginger and vanilla and a lovely thread of tangelo zest. A fine accompaniment to salmon. 14% alc. $27.50. 21Aug2010.

Gladstone Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A rich, textural, mouthcoating style with a touch of sweetness. Orchard fruit to the fore with just a hint of spice, mid palate vinosity, a touch of vanilla and a crispiness to the finish. Well balanced throughout with subtle oak adding complexity. Good wine. 11.5% alc. $23. 1Jun2010.

Greystone Waipara Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Fragrant and fruity with a nutty overlay to the bright, citrus-infused pear and peach scents, there's a delicate touch of sweetness with honeysuckle, rose petal and spice while juicy sweet orange / tangelo acidity brings the sweet pear and peach flavours into check. An outstanding NZ Pinot Gris with huge flavours supported by a light dancing step. 13.5% alc. $25.99. 30Sep2009.
A very appealing wine with ripe pear, stonefruit and pineapple sage aromatics and luscious full-bodied fruity flavours with textural complexity and a hint of musk. 14% alc. $22.99. 10Mar2010.

Greywacke Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 Light gold. Pear, peach and vanilla scent, perhaps a hint of nut too. Vibrant and spicy to the taste, texturally complex, nectarine and apricot fruit adding to the richness and tropical fruit emerging. Long and lifted, lovely weight, floral/honeysuckle finish with some botrytis adding to the complexity, perhaps. Quite yum on finish. 5 stars. 14.5% alc. 8.5 g/l rs. $29. 26Nov2010.

Hawkshead Central Otago Gibbston Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Like its stablemate Riesling this is earthy on the nose but in the mouth the mandarin-like acidity is much softer and the overall impression is sweeter. There's a creaminess to the texture with hints of vanilla and hints of musk coming through and a suggestion of white mushrooms on the finish. 13.5% alc. $26. 16Feb2010.

Hyperion Phoebe Matakana Pinot Gris 2009 (D) Smoky with a delicate floral nuance to the scent this is a fruity wine with hints of apricot then tropical fruit and melon. It's quite dry with a spicy zesty richness, an earthy undercurrent and a lightly honeyed texture and a lingering aftertaste of apricot and just ripe, late season pear. The best match of all to the hot smoked salmon - it can stand up to the flavour and the crunchy pear coated with cream cheese simply infuses into the wine. 13.5% alc. $30.00. 15Mar2010.

Isabel Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 Pale in colour. Apple aroma. A spritzy texture gives an impression of sherbet - apple sherbet, pears and lemony herbs. Fresh and refreshing with tangelo on the finish and a hint of pineapple too. 13% alc. $22. 26Nov2010.

Johanneshof Cellars Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (D) Labelled 'medium' this beautiful wine has an enticing floral aroma infused with Asian 'five spice' and it's off dry to the taste with soft acidity, a lusciousness to the silky mouthfeel and pear drop and spice flavours. It's Alsace-like with elegance and power and is very reminiscent of the Johanneshof's trophy winning 2007. 13% alc. $31.99. 16Feb2011.
Expressively perfumed and fragrant, more redolent of Gewurztraminer than Pinot Gris and the taste is full-bodied, textural and spicy with Turkish Delight, spiced baked apple and candied violets. Made in the rich, opulent Alsatian style, it's golden in colour with a sweet disposition and a long mouthfilling finish. 13% alc. $29.99. 1Feb2012.

Kairos Wild Barrique Ferment Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) 100% wild ferment in old oak barrels for 9 months creates a rich, textural, golden-coloured, full-bodied wine with a bready / biscuity aroma. A sliver of hokey-pokey sweetness and a touch of stonefruit joins rich apple and pear flavours, the backbone is flinty and the oak adds complexity and a subtle smokiness and the finish is full and long. 13.5% alc. $27.99. 25May2011.

Kumeu River Kumeu Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Hints of lanolin joins pears, nuts, spice and a suggestion of citrus zest on the nose. A fruity wine with moderate sweetness and oiliness to the texture, it's powerful in style with flavours of apple, pear, spice and white mushrooms and the finish is surprisingly dry. 12.5% alc. $25.99. 9Jun2010.

Lake Hayes Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Fragrant aroma with hints of tropical fruit and nuances of pineapple sage flowers. Just off dry to the taste with bright driving acidity keeping the luscious fruit in balance. Bright, fresh, and fruity with pear, apple and a touch of pineapple. Good. 13% alc. 7.6g/l rs. $25. 30Sep2009.

Lamont Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Juicy, fruity, aromatics with flower blossoms and vanilla. Dry yet has a richness to the creamy texture with juicy pears, spice, citrus zest and honeycomb and a persistence to the lasting finish. Full of flavour, even when chilled to the bone. 14.5% alc. $23.99. 24Feb2010.

Lansdowne Estate Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Crisp and fresh with apple and pear aromas that carry through to the dry, clean palate. It has a touch of spritzy sherbet, but all the while the sweet juicy apple flavours take centre stage with strudel spices, creaming soda and a nuance of vanilla adding complexity. More of a 'grigio' style, I'd say - high acidity seems to be the driver. 14% alc. 13May2011.

Lawson's Dry Hills Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Bright light gold in colour, A dull and earthy on the nose when first opened but give it time and smoky nuances come through together with pear conserve. Lots of juiciness to the flavour. Very classically pear - fresh pear, canned pear, dried pear - with a touch of herb adding interest - just a tickle of ginger and the brightness of pineapple over an earthy backbone that morphs into a fruit salad / cherimoya finish. Dry and full-bodied in style with a savouriness, probably from the 25% oak and wild ferment, underpinning the fruity flavours. 14% alc. $25.95. 20Nov2009.
Juicy, a little spicy, quite floral and delicately fruity but it is the texture that gives this dry Gris the x-factor. Fruit is in the apple and pear spectrum with peach coming through while subtle oak adds complexity to the long rich finish. 14% alc. $17.99. 29Sep2010.

Locharburn Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) This wine is quite high-toned without food, with varietal apple and pear fruit and a warm, nutty, textural backbone that builds in the mouth and softens the upfront acidity / steeliness. A wine that came into its own with a food match such as scallops. 14% alc. $25. 18Feb2010.
A wonderful rich fruity perfume reminiscent of the Tropical Skies hybrid tea rose and the full fruity flavours suggest peach and pear with hints of apple, spice and vanilla. This is a dry Pinot Gris with a creamy texture, warmth to the nutty finish and an underlying mealy savouriness adding complexity. It's so mouthfilling and appealing - perhaps the 20% oak ferment is the reason for the extra degree of complexity this wine has. 13.5% alc. $26. 22Oct2010.

Lonestone Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) This delicious, soft fruity wine has fragrant aromas of peaches and pears, a rich creamy texture, delicate hints of honeysuckle, ginger and citrus and a long rich finish. 14% alc. $15.99. 15Sep2010.

Mahi Ward Farm Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 Light to moderate gold. White honey, wild yeast and crushed wine biscuit scents. Funky in palate with dominant winemaking derived flavours of wild yeast and barrel ferment parting to let the fruit come through. Juicy sweet citrus and while flowers linger with biscuity, nutty, mealy flavours. Texturally complex and seamless, and quite delicious if you like the 'alternative' style. I do. 5 stars. 13.5% alc. 1 $29. 23Nov2010.

Main Divide Pokiri Reserve Late Picked Waipara Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Hints of musk on the nose - fragrant, floral, yet it doesn't prepare for the sweetness within. A late harvest wine - it is honeyed with a hedge flower bectar flavuor (I grabbed a flower off the hedge and compared), and a lovely mandarin-like zestiness. Lovely on its own, just a little sweet for the salmon but goes well with the pear and it is even better with pear and blue cheese. We later matched ti to pork belly cooked in a spicy wine reduction with kumara and pear. This wine was sensational with the food match. 13% alc. $24.95. 15 Mar2010.
Golden hued with a lime and honeysuckle aroma and a rich sweet flavour of honey, beeswax, candied peel and a sweet orange marmalade finish. A late picked wine with a touch of botrytis, a lightly viscous texture and impeccable acid balance. Most of the tasters classified the wine as 'medium sweet'. Outstanding and hard to resist.13% alc. $25.99. 1Feb2012.
A delicious, sweet, late harvest Pinot Gris, with a honeysuckle aroma, it has tingly acidity to balance the delicate candied orange and pear sweetness and strudel spices. Fine textured and beautifully balanced with a luscious finish that is penetrating and long. Outstanding wine. 13% alc. $25.99. 22Feb2012.

Main Divide Waipara Valley Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light yellow gold, Grapefruit on the nose with a little of a soapy floral fragrance too and plenty more grapefruit and musky florals in the mouth. “What an unusual Pinot Gris,” was my first reaction. This is was one that leaves an impression of being a full bodied and creamy wine with bright tropical fruit reminiscent of dried pineapple, mango and apricot with citrus zest and ginger flower. It has a lovely, lovely fruit regime that just becomes brighter and brighter in the glass and the next day this wine is absolutely singing. I just love the richness and the sweetness, without being sweet, of this wine. 14% alc. $19.95. 20Nov2009.

Margrain Martinborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Smells like a spicy little number with a touch of ginger flower coming through too. Dry in style, flinty and steely, all green apple and pear. Quite neutral and linear but sweetens up on finish. More of a food wine that one to drink just on its own. 13% alc. $18.95. 13Apr2011.

Matawhero Gisborne Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light gold in colour, this dry wine has a steely aroma with lemon pith, green apple, hints of nuts and a suggestion of marzipan. Steely, austere, a little zesty with a slightly oily texture when first opened, it's better the next day when it fattens up with warmth to the pear and apple flavours and a hint of vanilla on the finish. 12% alc. $25.00. 15 Mar2010.

Mitre Rocks Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light in colour but rich in aroma and flavour, this has heady pear drop scents, the flavours are spicy and zesty with apple and pear and the texture is lightly oily. It's a dry wine that builds in palate richness and has a stonefruit sweetness to the persistent finish. 15% was fermented in oak. 13.5% alc. $18. 19Nov2009.

Mount Dottrel Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light in colour but rich in aroma and flavour. Typically PG on the nose with heady pear drop, the flavours are spicy ad zesty with apple and pear flavours and a lightly oily texture, it builds in palate richness and has a stonefruit sweetness to the persistent finish. A good match to hot and spicy foods. 14% alc. $23.95. 11Nov2009.
Pale straw. Quite neutral scents of vanilla and pear. A little phenolic with a bitter orange infusion that adds to the appeal of this dry-styled wine, I guess. Smooth in texture with a steely undercurrent and flavours of vanilla and pear. The best match of all of to Chicken cooked in pinot gris, orange juice, honey and coriander – the food is quite sweet and perfect for this dry style. 23Nov2010.

Mount Riley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Subtlety is the driver of this pretty, floral, soft, juicy wine. The bouquet has delicate scents of violet while there's a touch of pepper complementing the Nashi pear flavours. Off dry in style and can be well chilled too. 14% alc. Screwcap. $14.99. 18Aug2010.

Mt Beautiful Cheviot Hills Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) There's a floral overtone to the nut-infused bread, pear and apricot scents but fruit is the first impression in the palate - apricot, peach, pear and red apple come to mind. There's a vanillin creaminess and a hint of zesty, gingery spice. Full-bodied with a mouth-filling richness, it finishes dry. A flavoursome and deliciously juicy Pinot Gris, this is a beautiful wine that I think will have much appeal. Made from first crop grapes with 30% was fermented in 3-year-old oak. 4.5 stars. 14.5% alc. $23.95. 6May2010.

Ohau Gravels Pinot Gris 2009(sc) A big, rich, concentrated, creamy, almost oily style. It has a powerful presence of gala apples, pear, quince, a hint of honeysuckle, a touch of mandarin and the bitterness of bright, tasty, freshly grated zest to balance the flavours that are just on the dry edge of sweetness. It's a fragrant spicy wine andt later nuances of pineapple come through too. First crop fruit with 5% barrel ferment. 14% alc. 3.5 g/l rs. $22.95. 16Oct2009.

Omaka Springs Estate Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Juicy aromas of Wattie's fruit salad. Creamy and textural with fresh orchard fruit, a little bit of spice, hints of vanilla and just a touch of sweetness. A very clean, and appealing, style. 14% alc. $17.99. 24Feb2010.

Palliser Estate Martinborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A little neutral on the nose, pear, biscuits maybe, but much more concentrated and intense to the taste. Quite rounded with textural warmth, strudel spices, a touch of vanilla custard (vanilla biscuits) and juicy fruit that sits neatly in the background. Although the sometimes ‘phenolic’ nature of the pinot gris comes through the finish is long and persistence. Very good. 13.5% alc. $27.30 23Jul2011.

Rimu Grove Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light citrine in colour with floral nuances to the nutty, savoury bready aromas, and just off dry to the taste. A hint of vanilla in the background complements the subtle fruit that is suggestive of apricots and nectarine. Lightly oily with richness to the mouthfeel, a creamy silkiness to the flow and warmth to the finish. 15% was aged in oak in four months and all components were aged on lees. 13.5% alc. $29. 8Oct2010.

Rock Ferry Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Subtle earthy nuances to the scent with clean fruit and a suggestion of smoke. In the palate this is a steely wine with a citrussy attack and the earthy nature of the Pinot Gris grape coming through. But its best asset is the finish - long, light, bright and definitely quite pleasing. Complexity from partial barrel ferment and time in the bottle come through. From Trig Hill in Bendigo. 13.5% alc. 8.9 g/l rs. $29.00. 8Oct2011.

Rockburn Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light gold in colour with neutral aromatics and a touch of sweetness to the pear and lime flavours with a hint of vanilla and an abundance of strudel spices with a finish that seems much drier than the start. Later that vanilla can be detected on the nose together with ripe apple and there's a light viscosity to the texture with creamed nuts and a spicy character that adds warmth to the wine. Opens up beautifully after decanting, or try the next day after opening. Screwcaps are so good for this. 14% alc. $23. 20Nov2009.

Rockburn The Devils Staircase Central Otago Pinot Gris 2009 A zing of grapefruit characterises the otherwise neutral aroma and carries through to the nutty palate with a hint of marzipan perplexing. Quite dry and also a little drying but very Xmassy with candied peel, dried apple, concentrated pear, other dried tropical fruits, a touch of ginger and those nuts with a white frosted coating. An interesting and fascinating wine, it even has a hint of wild strawberry and the finish is full-bodied. 14% alc. $18. 20Nov2009.

Sacred Hill 'Halo' Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A just off dry style with a core of juicy pear and apple fruit, there's a delicate spiciness, hints of Asian five spices, touch of vanilla and a infusion of tangelo adding brightness to the finish. Despite the hint of sweetness, it's a crisp fresh wine with moderate acidity. 14% alc. $25.90. 9Nov2009.

Sacred Hill Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) There's a smoky nutty character to the otherwise neutral apple skin aroma. Off dry style to the taste with a zesty impression, it's like a mash of melon and nuts, the fruit playing a minor role. Better the second day when some delicate peach and sucking-on-a-peach-stone flavours come through. 14% alc. $0.00. 15 Mar2010.

Seresin Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) The aroma is rich and intense with a hint of butterscotch coming through. I immediately think 'sweeter' and indeed it is a sweeter wine in the palate with a honey / apricot nuance that hints of botrytis while oak and exotic spices adds to the intrigue. A full-bodied savoury wine with delicious fruit intensity and a tingle of tangelo on the bready finish. Wild yeast ferment in seasoned barriques. 14.5% alc. 8.2 g/l rs. $30.00. 8Oct2011.

Spinyback Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 Straw gold colour. Spicy, white pepper, ginger and tangy citrus scents. Grapefruit dominates the flavour of this dryish style that has palate richness and weight. Fruit salad flavours brim through the spicy, creamy palate and the aftertaste is ripe and juicy. 14% alc. $17.90. 23Nov2010.

Spy Valley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) When chilled this seems quite dry and steely at first, with an oily texture, plenty of apple and a touch of ginger. Becomes quite rich and textural with honey adding a sweet impression to the finish and an abundance of pear. Oak and partial malolactic fermentation has added extra complexity. 14% alc. $19.99. 24Feb2010.
Light gold. Citrus peel, toffee apple and ripe pear scents. Citrus zest, herbs, honey follow through with classic flavours of pear with hints of stonefruit on the finish and a nice touch of musk and spice. Soft yet rich, and despite an initial suggestion of grapefruit, the acidity seems low. Lovely texture - lightly viscous, almost oily. A portion of the wine was fermented in old oak. 5 stars. 14% alc. 9 g/l rs. $19.90. 23Nov2010.

Takutai Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) An aromatic and sweetish wine, with some musky, gewurztraminer-like flavours coming through. Soft, easy but just a little cloying when tasted at room temperature. When chilled it has more characteristic pear with honeysuckle and apple aromas and a fatness to the palate. Chilling subdues the musky-like flavours, spice and zest are enhanced and the finish is phenomenal with its long, spicy hit. 14.5% alc. 6.4 g/l rs. $13.95. 26Apr2011.

Te Mania Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Delicate aromatics lead into a bright, spicy, zesty flavours with apple pie and a lovely seam of apricot running through the wine There's a hint of vanilla and I wonder if it has seen any oak, then concentrated pear, a hint of apricot and a suggestion of pineapple sage on the finish with a flourish of strudel spices to add that extra flair. Rich and textural with some warmth to the finish and the graininess that you get when you bite into a juicy pear. Nice. 13.5% alc. $21.99. 20Nov2009.
Moderately dry wine with a restrained scent at first, a little earthy, a little herbal with pear skin aromas coming through. Lovely apple-like acidity in the palate keeps any suggestion of sweetness in check. Richly textured, almost oily, just not quite. A fruity wine with classic flavours of pear infused with stonefruit. 13.5% alc. 7.5 g/l rs. $22. 21Jan2011.

Ti Point Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A dry, spicy style with juicy apple and pear fruit, vanilla and spice over a nutty backbone with a rounded mouthfeel all the way through. Chilling introduces a steely character that is quite refreshing on a steaming hot day. 13.8% alc. $17.99. 24Feb2010.

The Ned Waihopai River Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) There's the faintest of pink to the light gold colour and the aromas are neutral and slightly earthy with a suggestion of pear skin but this wine is much redeemed in the mouth with bright citrussy flavours and zest, apples, pears, mandarins and a touch of spice, perhaps a hint of oak to add the richness and power that the finish brings on. Perhaps this is one of those wines that needs decanting to let those aromatics beguile from the outset, one of those wines that will be more aromatic the following day. 13.5% alc. 18.99. 20Nov2009.

Tohu Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Concentrated aromas of peach sherbet, citrus and aromatic herb, then in the mouth it is nutty, spicy and citrussy with a tangelo-like zestiness power-surging through the finish. Citrus, stonefruit, spice and all things nice, served chilled this seems quite dry, the dryness tempered by the fruitiness all the way with an expansive finish and an underlying nutty savouriness. There's a touch of barrel ferment in this wine and later when the wine has warmed up, there is a delicate and pretty rose petal and musky nuance coming through too. Gold. 13.5% alc. $18.95. 13Feb2010.

Toi Toi Marlborough Brookvale Vineyard Reserve Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Straw gold in colour with an aroma of pear and honeysuckle and full-bodied, mouthfilling flavours with a tingle of ginger-like spice adding to the richness of the pear and apple fruit. Then a burst of sweet citrus zest on the dryish finish adds to the bright summery feel. 13% alc. $24.50. 1Oct2010.

Triplebank Awatere Valley Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Perfumed and floral with juicy apple and fruit salad scents and a touch of vanilla that adds to the spiced apple and pear dominant flavours. It's fairly dry in style with a pleasing texture and hints of peach, melon and pineapple sage on the long savoury finish. 14% alc. $18.99. 6Oct2010.
Light gold coloured with quite a heady scent and warm, textural flavours of lovely bright tropical fruit trending from apple to melon to apricot and pear, and strudel spices on the dry flinty finish. Has classic apple and pear, but more, and the aftertaste is deliciously long. 13% alc. $19. 17Aug2011.

Vavasour Awatere Valley Pinot Gris 2009 sc) Straw gold in hue, this wonderfully fragrant wine is perfumed with spiced apple and hints of vanilla. It's just off dry in style with lovely texture and weight and incredibly juicy flavours of pear, peach and pineapple with an appealing touch of spice. 14% alc. $18.99. 22Sep2010.
With a bouquet infused with fresh cut peach, this is a richer wine both on the nose and in the palate. Sweet mandarin-like citrus hums though the wine with pear, peach and spice and it hints of a little butterscotch too. Multi-layered, juicy and just off dry. 14% alc. $18.99. 9Feb2011.

Vidal Estate East Coast Viognier 2009 (sc) Light yellow gold with hints of nougat, nuts and apricot on the bouquet, this is a bright high-toned, moderately oily wine with textural richness, smoky almost musky character, abundant apricot and peach fruit flavours and a long soft finish. Lovely example of a V wine. 14.5% alc. $14.99. 11Aug2010.

Waimea Bolitho SV Nelson Pinot Gris 2009 Aromas seem quite neutral at first, becoming quite floral with honey and nectar. A rich, luscious sweet wine with light viscosity to the texture, bright clean juicy mandarin to cut through the honey and additional flavours of dried tropical fruits - mango and pineapple - with sweet apple and pear. 4.5 stars. 13% alc. $24.90. 23Nov2010.

Wairau River Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) Light straw gold. Classic gris aromas of apple, pear and strudel spices characterise this fragrant wine that's dry in style. Citrus zest and a hint of ginger add brightness to the juicy white fruit flavours with a hint of ginger and creaming soda on the finish. Chilling accentuates the acidity. 13.5% alc. $19.99. 14Oct2009.

West Brook Waimauku Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) From the first Pinot Gris fruit picked off the Waimauku Estate, this is a fresh bright wine with pear and citrus fruit and a light oiliness to the texture. Winemaker James Rowan says he made it in a 'Riesling' style and it is delicously quenching when served chilled on a hot summer's day. 12.5% alc. $25.90. 7Mar2010.
Pale in colour. Fragrant pip fruit scents although a little restrained. Just off Dry in style, it's crammed with stewed apple and pear with orange honey coming through on the finish with a touch of ginger and zest. While the bouquet is restrained, the flavours are rich and the finish is long and juicy. 12.5% alc. 9.4 g/l rs. $21.90. 26Nov2010.

Wild South Marlborough Pinot Gris 2009 (sc) A spicy, zesty wine with plenty of acidity but it is well-balanced, not pointy, with a warm nutty backbone and ripe pear-like nuances. A full, rich wine that finishes with the sweetness of fresh late season pear and leaves a lovely, rounded, sweet-fruited, warm lingering mouthfeel with a hint of peach coming through. Like this when opened but like the others even better the second day. A better match with the food too. 14% alc. $18.90. 15/Mar2010.

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Index to Varietal Tastings
Chardonnay Gewurztraminer
Pinot Gris Sauvignon Blanc Other Whites
Bubblies Sweeties Pinks
Cabernet dominant Merlot dominant Pinotage
Pinot Noir Shiraz Other Reds

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