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edited by Sue Courtney

Wednesday Round-up - the 2012 edition
Sue Courtney's tasting notes from the First Glass Fine Wine Wednesday $15 tastings

May 2012
[ Click here for index to other months ]

Sue Courtney's Fine Wine Wednesday tasting notes were recorded for First Glass Wines and Spirits in Takapuna for publication on their website. These notes are archival and may have been deleted from their site by now.
Some of the prices may be 'specials'. Check out for current availability and pricing. New Zealand readers can purchase the wines online from there.

Fine Wine Wednesday Tasting - 30 May 2012
Budget Price v Premium Price
All of the wines were tasted blind.

Saint Clair Vicar's Choice Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Strikingly pungent aroma of tropical fruit, capsicum and summer herbs – smelling so fresh and juicy and tasting even more so with its exciting, vibrant flavours. Lovely grapefruit-like acidity keeps the passionfruit fruit sweetness in check – a touch of pineapple too. Fruit bowl in a glass. Terrific wine. 2 gold medals. 5 star quality. 5 star value.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $12.99 special.

Saint Clair Pioneer Block 1 Foundation Block Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2011
This is so much more restrained on the nose and in the taste – lots of green connotations here – new mown grass, tangy herbs, angelica, tropical fruit, a creamy texture with a honeyed layer to the finish. Full-bodied and mouthfilling without being overpowering yet typically long and lingering. 2 gold medals.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $22.99 special.

Matahiwi Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2008
Radiant light yellow gold. Savoury oak on the nose and rich and toasty in the palate – an oaky, smoky, buttery wine with fruit in the melon and peach spectrum and a toasted nut backbone. Five years old and while developing some broad bottle-aged characters, it's looking very smart and fresh for its age.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $14.99 special

Church Road Cuve Series Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2010
Sweetly scented aromas with nuts and nougat filling the palate. Lots of creamy, mealy, oatmeal characters, juicy nectarines and peaches and a sweet oak finish that lingers beautifully. A great HB vintage for Chardonnay and it shows in this classy wine.
14% alc. Screwcap. $24.99 special.

Kaimira Iti Selection Brightwater Nelson Riesling 2011
The bouquet is quite delicate with lime sherbet and a suggestion of apple blossom that is reinforced by the spritzy apple juice flavours – the fruit is sweet yet the wine is crisp and finishes dry with plenty of acidity to balance the 27grams a litre of residual sugar. Gold and Trophy for Champion Riesling @ NZIWS.
10% alc. Screwcap. $19.99 special.

Tohu Marlborough Riesling 2010
A more earthy smelling wine with a hint of honey and day old orange skin to the fore. This is vibrant and tangy with richness and intensity, juicy citrus and well balanced acidity with a layer of honey at the end, A wine that has improved terrifically in the bottle, and will improve even more in the cellar. Gold NZIWS.
12.5% alc. Screwcap. $NA.!

Granrojo Rojo Garnacha 2010 – Spain
Juicy red fruit infiltrates the savoury nose of this Burgundy-hued wine and it initially tastes quite dry and herbal with firm mouthcoating tannins – you know it is not from New Zealand. Yet the fruit is juicy and sweet and the whole impression is medium-bodied and fleshy. Very popular with the tasters tonight.
13% alc. Screwcap. $11.99 special.

El Puno Garnacha 2007 – Calatayud, Spain
Such a contrast to the Rojo with deep colour, juicy red fruit, chocolate biscuit and vanillin oak scents, it smells like it has to be from across the Tasman but it is indeed from Spain. A bigger, drier, more serious wine with plenty of oak, fleshy tannins, bright fruit and a long, warm, sumptuous finish. So interesting to taste two vastly different expressions of the same variety from the same country but this fine beauty was my favourite.
15% alc. Screwcap. $51.99.

The Lackey South Australian Shiraz 2009
Deep and sensuous smelling with smoky vanillin oak and dark berry fruit scents. Very ripe and juicy in the palate with blackberries and strawberries, firm tannins, a nice seasoning of pepper, oak in the background, underlying acidity and a touch of creamy chocolate on the smooth lingering finish. A blockbuster wine at a blockbuster price.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. $15.99 special.

Wine Men of Gotham South Australian Shiraz 2008
Savoury oak and a hint of rubber band / pepper on the nose, this dark coloured wine presents as a little older with its fine integrated tannins and smooth easy-going texture. It's savoury, gamey and peppery with a fleshy finish and the favoured of the pair by most of the tasters on the night. 5 star value.
13.9% alc. Screwcap. $12.99 special.

Jacobs Creek Centenary Hill Barossa Valley Shiraz 2006
Another older looking wine with a slight bricking to the deep dark red hue and again a huge vanillin oak scent but in contrast to the sweet smelling scent this is seriously savoury and powerful with fine tight-knit tannins, chocolate biscuits, red and black fruit, smoky oak, a touch of mint and a long creamy finish all adding to its appeal.
14% alc. Screwcap. $44.99.

Two Hands Gnarly Dudes Barossa Valley Shiraz 2010
A deep, intense, powerful wine this shiny purple black-coloured wine totally exudes class in every way with its opulent scent and sumptuous mouthfilling flavours. There are lovely savoury, cedary complexities to the sweet vanillin oak, firm but pillowy tannins, red and black berry fruits, hallmark pepper, fruit cake spices, a touch of bitter chocolate, a savoury undercurrent and a totally delicious, mouth enveloping finish. 5 star quality.
14% alc. Screwcap. $28.99 special.

Fine Wine Wednesday Tasting - 23 May 2012
Not So Common
All of the wines were tasted blind.

Coopers Creek Gisborne Gruner Veltliner 2010
Light gold coloured, not overly aromatic, a little bit biscuity perhaps, yet rich and textural in the palate with an almost oily, lanolin-like texture. An interesting and intriguing wine with hints of apricot and pepino, a nutty richness and a warm, glycerolic mouthfeel. A very clean wine, a lovely aperitif style and doesn't need too much chilling.
13% alc. Screwcap. $20.99.

Domaine Lafond Roc-Epine Rosι – Tavel, France
Colour is pale garnet – like you've had red wine in the glass and poured white wine over it. Savoury, earthy aromatics are infused with bittersweet cherries and while it's technically dry there's a confectionery sweetness in the palate, like Throaties lollies for those who remember them. Building in richness, weight and complexity, the finish is satisfying with nuances of strawberry and redcurrant lingering. A blend of 60% Grenache, 10% Cinsault, 10% Syrah , 5% Carignan and other varieties.
13.5% alc. Cork. $NA.

Alpha Zeta Garganega 2011 – Veneto, Italy
Pale straw, with a delicate, floral, nutty scent. At first it seems rather neutral tasting- it is the mouthcoating warm, rounded texture that's so seductive here. A little salty perhaps – what would probably be termed minerally, with a crisp, spritely, sherbetty, finish and a salivating flourish of peach and lime. Matt Thompson from Saint Clair is the winemaker. An old Italian variety with a modern twist.
12.5% alc. Screwcap. $22.99.

Schoffit Pinot Blanc Auxerrios 2009 – Alsace, France
Light greenish gold. Again a neutral smelling wine - a little nutty perhaps, but it is the moderate sweetness in the palate balanced by lime and strawberry sherbet fizzy fruit flavours, building to peach on the end, that captures the attention. It has a clean, mouthcoating texture and a bright lingering aftertaste with subtle nuances of rose petals and a Gewurztraminer-like spiciness adding to its appeal.
13% alc. Cork.. $30.99.

Brown Brothers Lexia 2010 – Victoria, Australia
Now this is much more obvious with its fragrant aromas of honeysuckle and rose petals and intense, concentrated Muscat grape flavours. The natural grape sweetness is finely balanced by refreshing acidity and there's a honeyed layer at the end. One of Australia's most popular sweet wines, delivering value for money in a 750-ml size.
10.5% alc. Screwcap. $17.99.

Schoffit Cuvee Alexander Old Vine Gewurztraminer 2010 – Alsace, France
Radiant light yellow gold with a tantalising bouquet of apricot nectar, rose petal and Turkish Delight, this is tingly and spicy in the palate, ginger comes to mind. Rich, concentrated, sweet and honeyed with a powerfully long, rounded, mouthcoating finish, some people though it too sweet but Gewurztraminer fanatics will love this.
13.5% alc. Cork. $45.99.

Alpha Zeta Valpolicella Ripasso 2009 – Verona, Italy
Dark garnet red. Earthy, savoury and leathery smelling with a rosemary-like herbal infusion – old world springs to mind and this is confirmed by the dry, savoury flavours with smoky oak, fleshy cherry and almost port-like raisiny flavours. Matt Thompson re-ferments young wine with dried out grapes to add to the concentration, weight and texture. Made from 70% Corvino and 30% Rondanello, it has a lingering mouthfilling, chocolate raisin finish.13.5% alc. Screwcap. $25.99 special.

Trapiche Oak Cask Malbec 2010 – Mendoza, Argentina
Dense crimson black, savoury and leathery smelling, this concentrated, gutsy red has plenty of oak, tannin and peppery spice. It's full-bodied and concentrated with velvety tannins, an earthy, savoury depth, juicy berries and a floral finish and an infusion on herbs. Value packed cosy red that will improve in the bottle too.
14% alc. Cork. $14.99 special.

Kaapzicht Pinotage 2007 – Stellenbosch, South Africa
Dark black red, perfumed with vanillin oak, chocolate biscuits and berries, this is a juicy, jammy, velvety red with lashings of American oak, herbs, red and black berries with strawberry lingering on the finish. Full and concentrated, it's a very good example of this grape from one of the renowned Pinotage producers.
13% alc. Cork. $29.99.

Penfolds Bin 138 Barossa Grenache Shiraz Mourvedre 2010
Deeply translucent purple red and distinctly Australian on the nose and in the palate. With chocolate, mocha and vanillin oak aromas, this beautifully balanced wine delivers in the palate with a fine tannin structure, blackcurrant and blueberry fruit, liquorice, pepper, smoke, deli meats and a dry but salivating finish. Grenache make a flourish of strawberry nuances at the end.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. $28.99 special.

Yalumba The Strapper Barossa GSM 2010
A blend of the same grapes, this is a similar but denser colour than the Penfolds 138 but restrained on the nose and seemingly sweeter in the palate Medium-bodied, smoky, earthy and leathery with jammy strawberry and raspberry fruit, soft tannins, herbs de Provence and a light touch of pepper.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $18.99 special.

Spy Valley Noble Marlborough Chardonnay 2009
Radiant sunshine gold with a sublime, tantalising nectar-like scent and delicious tropical fruit salad flavours, like pineapple and mangos in syrup, then peaches and toffee. A luscious sweet treat, yet with perfect acid balance so it's not cloying at all. 375 ml.
10.5% alc. Screwcap. $22.99.

Fine Wine Wednesday Tasting - 16 May 2012
Class of 2009
All but the Montrachet were tasted blind.

Quail's Run Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2009
A lovely smooth, ripe, creamy wine with a fragrant nutty bouquet, and rich ripe, juicy flavours - there's cashews, oatmeal, peaches, a touch of citrus, and a spicy, toasty finish. A super starter wine with a silky, seamless flow - just perfect for 5 o'clock drinks.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $12.99 special.

Joseph Drouhin Puligny Montrachet 2009 – Cτte de Beaune, Burgundy, France
Not tasted blind, but if it had been, this is unquestionably Chardonnay with subtle smoky nuances to the nougat rich bouquet and lovely mealy citrussy flavours. Layered with savoury oak and salted nuts yet with delectable fruit sweetness coming through, it's not an overpowering wine but it stays with you for a long time.
13.5% alc. Cork. $88.99.

Villa Maria Reserve Dry Marlborough Riesling 2009
With a bouquet of citrus, talc and honeysuckle, this pale straw Riesling looks and tastes youthful too. It is dry, tangy, steely and racy yet has juicy fruit sweetness from the array of citrus flavours with a hint of tarragon on the crisp, fresh and very long-lasting finish.
11% alc. Screwcap. $21.99 special.

Sherwood Waipara Riesling 2009
Like sunshine in the glass, the honey and apricot aromas and flavours radiate sunshine too. A rich, medium sweet and quite luscious style with beeswax adding a savoury layer and the fresh tang of grapefruit at the end - it makes you think sunshine on a rainy, wintry day. Perfect with dried fruit and creamy blue cheese.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $9.99 special.

Charles Wiffen Marlborough Gewurztraminer 2009
While the perfume is delicately floral and seemingly restrained, it's impossible to mistake the varietal make-up with distinctive Turkish delight and lychee flavours infused with a tingle of ginger. A lighter style than some than are produced in Marlborough, it was awarded Gold at the Spiegelau Competition last year.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $21.99 special.

Olssens Jackson Barry Central Otago Pinot Noir 2009
Dark burgundy red with some translucency to the hue, this full-bodied, savoury, spicy Pinot has cherry and rosemary aromas that promise plenty. Cherry and plum fruit is concentrated and juicy, there's a lovely rosemary and thyme infusion while the firm dry tannins and underling acidity assure a period of evolution in the bottle. Rated No.
1 in Cuisine.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $43.99 special.

Villa Maria Cellar Selection Hawkes Bay Merlot Cabernet 2009
Deep dark red with a crimson glow. Smoky sweet oak and redcurrant aromas and juicy plum and red berry flavours with vanillin oak, chocolate, cigar box and boot leather lie on a bed of thick-set tannins. Once the tannins dissolve the mouthfeel becomes velvety smooth succulence and the ripe, bright finish has a flourish of pepper and cake spice. A blend of 56% Merlot, 42% Cabernet and 2% Malbec. Elite Gold AirNZ, Gold Easter Show. 5 star quality. 5 star value. Star buy.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $14.99 special.

Mills Reef Elspeth Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Merlot 2009
Dark burnished red with a suggestion of translucency to the hue, this full-boded red has a bouquet of dark chocolate infused with a smidgen of mint and earthy savoury flavours. Firm in the palate with smoke and cigar box nuances to the cedary oak flavours, deep set plum and blackcurrant fruit and plenty of tannin but it's not aggressive or grippy and the rounded finish is juicy, spicy and long.
14% alc. Screwcap. $41.99.

Penfolds Koonunga Hill 2009 - South Australia
Dark red, youthful, just starting to pick up some translucency. Spicy aromatics with a savoury redolence and at first the flavours are savoury rather then fruity with a tingle of spritz on the tongue. Perhaps a little cold when poured but warmed up nicely in the glass to reveal mocha, biscuity oak, red berries and soft smooth tannins. Gold NZIWS.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $12.99 special.

Penfolds Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz 2009 - South Australia
Deep dark red, almost opaque. Lovely deep, rich sweet American oak scent infused with plums and cherries - and when you taste it you immediately know it is more expensive (than the previous wine). Sourced from around South Australia but with a majority Barossa fruit, this is rich, ripe, juicy and succulent with biscuity oak, succulent fruit, svelte tannins, pepper and cake spices and a super long finish.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. $28.99 special.

Wolf Blass Gold Label Barossa Shiraz 2009
Purple red, almost impenetrable and perfumed with chocolate, vanilla, plum and pepper; this opulent red takes Aussie Shiraz to another hedonistic level. It's so juicy, succulent and deep with a super smooth texture, Shiraz's distinctive black pepper and sumptuous Barossa fruit sweetness, underlying savouriness, a lifted finish and lingering chocolate and red liquorice. Kingsley describes this outstanding wine as "monumental". Champion Shiraz at NZIWS 2011.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. $20.99 special.

Saints Vineyard Selection Gisborne Noble Semillon 2009
Dark gold in colour with a honey, apricot and tropical fruit scent with a hint of oak in the background, this is rich and unctuous in the palate with exciting marmalade-like acidity to cut through the tropical fruit / honey sweetness. Concentrated and intense. 375ml bottle. 12% alc. Screwcap. $18.99 special.

Fine Wine Wednesday Tasting - 9 May 2012
New Zealand v Australia
All of the wines were tasted blind.

Muddy Water James Hardwick Riesling 2009
This gorgeous, refreshing, juicy Riesling is the perfect aperitif or pre-taster. It's lemon citrine in colour, smelling fresh and floral and tasting so tantalising fresh and juicy with lime sherbet and zesty tangelo brightness with perfectly balanced acidity to balance the medium sweetness and if you want, just a smidgen of kero creeping in. Star Buy.
13% alc. Screwcap. $12.99 special.

Vasse Felix Margaret River Chardonnay 2010
Light lemon gold with a bouquet of caramel cream, then grapefruit the most dominant character in the palate. Full-bodied and mealy with a flinty backbone, finishing crisp and dry, the clue to the region when tasted blind is the acidity, and then the caramel promised on the bouquet lingers on the lasting finish.
125% alc. Screwcap. $23.99.

Clearview Reserve Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2010
Light gold with a toasty oak, cream and grilled peach bouquet that carries through to the mealy, savoury palate. This is the bigger, richer and more powerful of the pair with a malty backbone, biscuity oak, bottled peaches and a touch of tangelo zest that adds freshness and zing to the lingering mouthfilling aftertaste. Outstanding.
14% alc. Screwcap. $32.99 special.

Schoffit Pinot Gris 2009 –Alsace, France
Light gold with a lustrous glow this rich, honeyed, almost luscious wine has a honeysuckle aroma, nuances of oranges and tarragon, hints of stewed peach and spiced baked apples with rose petals emerging on the end. With its soft acidity and roundness it is very easy to like.
13.5% alc. Cork. $32.99 special.

Wirra Wirra Church Block McLaren Vale Cabernet Shiraz Merlot 2009
Deep crimson red. Quite sumptuous smelling with creamy vanillin oak and blackberry scents then smoky and savoury in the palate with concentrated blackcurrant and raspberry fruit, cigar box, a touch of leather, dry tannins, a touch of chicory and some underlying acid in there to balance the fruity sweetness. The finish is bright and long. 50/30/20 blend.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. $19.99 special.

Mills Reef Reserve Gimblett Gravels Merlot Malbec 2010
Deep dark red with violet edges. Chocolate vanillin oak on the nose and dry and rich in the palate with firm fine tannins, boot leather, chocolate biscuits and smoky oak. A lovely, rich, dense, full-bodied, rounded, mouthfilling wine with soft acidity and lingering fruit flavours of plums and black cherries.
14% alc. Screwcap. $22.99 special.

Te Awa Hawkes Bay Syrah 2010 Deep purple red with a concentrated plum and blueberry aroma, this is a rich, meaty wine with supple tannins, sweet smoky oak, concentrated red berries and woody herbs like thyme and rosemary. Lovely fine yet firm structure and the perfect touch of pepper and allspice seasoning on the end. A big wine, it was decanted before the tasting. Gold NZIWS.
14% alc. Cork. $31.99.

Thorn Clarke Shotfire Barossa Shiraz 2010
Similar in colour, perhaps even more purple with a crimson brightness to the edges. Attractive smoky vanillin oak, cake spice and pepper scents and big, rich, ripe, juicy, sumptuous and exciting flavours. There's chocolate biscuits, spice, plums, and blackberries with a touch of mocha and liquorice and leather at the end.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. $23.99 special.

Passage Rock Waiheke Island Syrah 2010
Deep purple red showing some fineness to the appearance. Vanillin oak, juicy cherry fruit and hints of chocolate on the nose. Quite firm and dry in the palate yet supple and fleshy with dried herbs, purple fruit and plenty of cedar. A juicy, succulent rendition of Syrah that shows how electrifying it can be in a super hot year. Teriffic wine. 5 stars Winestate.
14% alc. Screwcap. $32.99.

Hardy's Eileen Hardy Shiraz 2002 - South Australia
Deep dark red with some bricking to the edges. Hinting of age in the colour and even more so on the nose and in the palate with iodine-like bottle-aged characters coming through. Tannins are incredibly fine, there's plenty of pepper and nutmeg and still that sweet oak thread but the fruit is now a memory in this savoury wine that finishes firm and dry. A treat to taste a wine of this pedigree on a Wednesday night.
14% alc. Cork. $112.99 special.

Selaks Reserve Gewurztraminer Riesling 2011
Radiant lemon gold. Honey and apricot on the nose, concentrated and sweet in the palate with tangy citrus, apple, dried tropical fruit and a touch of honey. A blend of Gisborne and Waipara fruit, this is a lighter, late harvest style. No. 2 in Cuisine's sweet wine tasting.
11.5% alc. Screwcap. $14.99 special. 375ml bottle.

De Bortoli Noble One Semillon 20018 – Riverina, NSW
Sunshine yellow a concentrated honeysuckle and beeswax bouquet, this is syrupy and decadently viscous in the palate with pineapple, passionfruit, apricot and mango with layers and layer of toffee. A full botrytis style, a benchmark for Australia.
10.5% alc. Screwcap. $39.99. 375ml bottle.

Fine Wine Wednesday Tasting - 2 May 2012
Central Otago v Waipara v Wairarapa
All of the wines were tasted blind.

Main Divide Waipara Chardonnay 2008
Rich yellow gold with a mellow oak bouquet and smooth, creamy, soft rounded flavours of nuts and oatmeal with a citrussy tang. Heading towards 'marmalade on toast' with lovely fresh acidity adding brightness to the smooth, rich finish.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $N/A.

Mt Difficulty Central Otago Chardonnay 2008
Though the same age, this is a lighter gold colour and has a tighter, more youthful, fresh veneer with a creamy bouquet and juicy citrus and stonefruit flavours. There's a lovely savoury influence, nutty oak and a flinty undercurrent, rounding out to a creamy finish with richness and depth. Gold NZIWS.
14% alc. Screwcap. $34.99.

Matahiwi Holly Wairarapa Chardonnay 2009
Moderate gold coloured with a lightly oily, nutty bouquet, this has a bit of a sherbet-like zing to start but fattens up beautifully with cream caramel richness, grilled peaches, orange zest and a malty finish. Long and rich with lovely mouthfeel and balance, almost luscious as it lingers. "It fits the First Glass mould perfectly," says Kingsley. Gold NZIWS.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $25.99 special.

Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Central Otago Pinot Gris 2011
Straw gold coloured with a fruity aroma of apple strudel and citrus and bright fresh, juicy orchard fruit flavours with an exciting infusion of passionfruit and French tarragon. Just off dry and perfectly chilled (abut 90 minutes in the walk-in chiller), it tastes even more exquisite than when it won the Champion Pinot Gris trophy at NZIWS last year.
14% alc. Screwcap. $19.99 special.

Alexia Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2010
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. 4 stars and Best Buy in Cuisine.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $16.99 special.

Clos St William Waipara Pinot Gris 2009
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. The crowd favourite and almost irresistible.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $19.99 special.

Martinborough Vineyards Manu Riesling 2010
A fragrant, straw coloured wine that initially gives the impression of being dry but it's the vibrant and intense lemon-like acidity that masks the honeyed richness (from a small percentage of botrytised grapes) and baked apple sweetness. A penetrating wine with a phenomenally juicy finish, it featured in Cuisine's Top 10.
11.5% alc. 20 g/l residual sugar. Screwcap. $24.99.

Misha's Vineyard Limelight Central Otago Riesling 2011
Served moderately chilled, this baby Riesling is quite earthy and flinty and seems very tight but shows so much potential with lovely, though subtle, flavours coming through. Delicate florals, a touch of spice, a suggestion of honey, lime and passionfruit with a delectable lingering nuance of tarragon, and an expansive finish is crisp, clean and bright.
11.5% alc. Screwcap. $27.99.

Muddy Water Unplugged Waipara Riesling 2009
Rich gold, like a Chardonnay in appearance, this rich tasting wines has tantalising honey / toffee aromas and so much more in the palate. Decadently sweet, late harvest undoubtedly, luscious, juicy, seductive in every way. Even though two years older than the previous two, it still has fresh acidity and a delicious infusion of tangy zest.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $16.99 special.

Domain Road Central Otago Pinot Noir 2009
Deep violet red. Savoury, herbal aroma. Spicy, savoury and just a little meaty to the taste with blackberry and black cherry fruit, firm tannins and the merest hint of chocolate on the finish, Nothing like the flamboyant 2007 - not a fruit bomb at all, just seriously savoury with a long lasting finish. Trophy Decanter Regional Wine Awards.
14% alc. Screwcap. $35.99 special.

Julicher Martinborough Pinot Noir 2009
While the light red colour is not particularly intense, the taste delivers in every way. It has a deep, rich, almost chocolatey aroma with savoury oak and red cherries, and rich, juicy, savoury flavours. This enchants from the outset with its depth and richness, cherry and plum fruit, a touch of spice, almost plush silky tannins and a long savoury finish with hints of white mushroom. A lovely underpinning of acidity too. 5 star quality.
14.8% alc. Screwcap. $31.99 special.

Pegasus Bay Prima Donna Waipara Pinot Noir 2009
Deep ruby red. Smoky and savoury on the nose with bright berry fruit, but the funky, savoury, earthy flavours are such a contrast. Then a waft of rose petal and cake spices, and incredibly fine silky tannins. So much going on in this wine. Vinfanticide to drink right now - decant into a big glass, or let it evolve in the cellar.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. $89.99.

Note: The New Zealand wines listed on this page should have been cross-catalogued to my wine reviews by grape variety - check out my Wine Review Index.

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