Saturday, 27 September 2014

Crossroads Winery

Crossroads Winery Winemakers Collection Syrah 2013 Gimblett gravels Hawke's Bay 13.5%
Robust, bold, varietal, meaty, spicy and 100% Syrah bouquet - another example of where NZ Syrah is heading with gravelly soil laden red and black fruits - roasted raspberry and spicy Doris plum, suggestions of both white and black pepper and a meaty complexity. The palate shows off both the great 2013 vintage with a pure core of fruit and a big helping of oak that will ease over time suggesting cellaring is better than drinking right now (now there's challenge!). Medium++ tannins, medium++ acidity; young, vibrant and complex. If you like Northern Rhone red wines - this will be a smart purchase.
5 Stars (90 Points)

Black Estate

Black Estate Waipara Valley 'Damsteep' Pinot Noir 2012 13%
A strong bouquet with a mineral and soil driven beginning laced with aromas of light red fruits, barrel spices and noticeable complexity; the palate suggests a very youthful wine still in the throws of bringing together the attributes of a fine wine - medium+ fine tannins, medium+ acidity and a taut, tense and poised moment mid palate with more light red fruits a highlight. these finer points will merge and show harmony in 2-3 years. A lovely example, well made and with and medium+ finish.
4 Stars

Yealands Estate

Yealands Estate Awatere Valley Single Vineyard P.G.R. 2014 13%
Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Riesling
A mixed bag of aromas from all the varieties in the blend - lemon and red apple, Asian pears and roasted tropical fruits; the palate reflects the nose with light fragrant flavors of tree and citrus fruits laced with a little Gewurz' spice. Dry finish with medium+ acidity and a generous finish. Balanced and well made. Super food friendly style.
3.5 Stars

Mills Reef Winery

Mills Reef Winery Reserve Pinot Gris Hawke's Bay 2013 13%
A rich and bold bouquet with aromas of creamy white fleshed fruits and creamy vanilla oak - hints of spice and complexity; the palate reflects the bouquet well with creamy textures, medium+ acidity and flavors of baked pear and red apple; the oak adds a gentle complexity and extra layer of flavor. Balanced, incredibly drinkable and a smart choice alternative to Chardonnay with its slightly weightier palate appeal.
4 Stars

Mud House

Mud House Marlborough Pinot Gris 2014 14%
Fruity, forward and quite a striking attractive bouquet with aromas and flavors of peach and white fleshed fruits; a spice note shows off the warmth of the alcohol; balanced, just off dry with a fleshy juicy texture and a medium+ finish. As usual a very well made wine with a wide audience appeal.
3.5 Stars 

Friday, 26 September 2014

Mills Reef Winery

Mills Reef Winery Reserve Syrah Gimblett Gravels Hawke's Bay 2013 13.5%
Dark wild ruby appearance with purple hues
A bold and expressive bouquet packed with GG dry stone minerals and ripe vibrant red and black fruits: black peppered raspberry and plum, sweet violet florals and a plenty of oak - but not too much. The very ripe vintage is showing well here - not masking.
The palate - dry, rich, firm, youthful, ripe M+ tannins with plenty of them to charm a core of ripe red fruits; medium+ silky acidity; a longish finish. A fabulous wine with a light smokey oak unfurling on the finish - and a wine with plenty of cellar potential.
5 stars

Gillman Vineyard

Gillman Vineyard Matakana 2007 14%
Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec
Violets, back and red fruits, dreamy oak and packed with complexity; as the wine begins to open up there is a power house of complexity and sophisticated charm driving the bouquet; The palate is equally exciting with a masculine edge and big shoulders to the Cabernet softened by the velvet elegance of the Merlot; plenty of tannin, plenty of acidity; a long Bordeaux-esque like finesse and finish. Well made and still ageing well.
5 Stars (91 points)

Gillman Vineyard Matakana 2008 14%
Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec
With similar attributes on the nose to the 2007 - this example has a much softer fruits bouquet and a much bigger bolder oak signature - more feminine overall in nature. The palate does reflect these attributes with a more oak centred grouping of tannins underpinned by well managed fruit; medium+ acidity and length, a charming wine overall with slightly more food oriented drive (Cheese).
4.5 Stars

Gillman Vineyard Matakana 2012 13% Rose
Cabernet Franc and Merlot - slightly unfiltered appearance deep salmon onion skin appearance
Smokey with soft red fruits of wild strawberry and wild red fruits tea; there is plenty of character and personality with this wine;  enough lees and barrel work to add a notable amount of complexity both in terms of flavor and texture; a longish finish, medium+ (ish) acidity, balanced and well made. Not a wine for everyone who is partial to rose, but easily restaurant grade and plenty to work with when it come to food.
4 Stars

Yealands Estate

Yealands Estate SV Awatere Valley Pinot Noir 2014 13.5%
Deep salmon and rose colored, star bright and vibrant appearance. Smart new labeling as well.
Lots of light red fruit aromas with spring cherry, red apple skin and a touch of strawberry; fresh, lively and forward. The palate reflects the nose well with a light creamy textured wine showing off the flavors of light red fruits; just dry with a little sweetness in the fruit; balanced and well made. An easy choice for the Summer table.
3 Stars - highly recommended

Two Degrees

Two Degrees 2014 Rose (Pinot Noir) Central Otago 13.4%
Cherry red and rose petal appearance, super bright.
Aromas of fresh Summer strawberry and red cherry flesh; bright crisp and warm fruity bouquet; the palate reveals a dry textured wine with lots of impact and style; medium++ acidity alongside the crisp and clear red fruit flavors add up to a wine worthy of your attention and time - over the Summer season. Balanced, crisp, dry and well made.
3.5 Stars 

Villa Maria

Villa Maria Rose Private Bin Light Hawke's Bay 2014 9%
A very light Salmon pink hue with apricot ice-tea tinge
Delicate light red fruits dominate the bouquet with suggestions of crushed strawberry, sweet red melon and a little red apple skin; the palate reflects the nose with a soft texture packed with fruity flavors dominated again by strawberry and melon; balanced, just off-dry in style and with a creamy texture this is a very easy to drink style of modern NZ Rose wine.
Highly recommended