Soho Zabeel Blue Blood Waiheke Island Reserve Blend 2014 $138 (5 stars)

Excruciatingly gorgeous to drink in that it’s torture knowing that your glass will eventually end.  I love the lift of vanilla, pepper, dark chocolate and intense boysenberry layers in this merlot syrah malbec blend by the talented team over at Soho.  Dense, dark berries, smoke, cured meats and solid, dusty oak creates supreme definition of […]

Domaine Bernard Defaix Cuvee Vielle Vigne Chablis 2014 $53

Get ready, get set and go to a happy place of intense lemony, chalky notes that sit up and shout “Oi! I’m a Chablis!” Made from clean, concentrated chardonnay fruit, the result of 100% tank fermentation is a wine bursting with buckets of smashed quartz, grapefruit pith and minerality to burn.  Punchy, peach-driven and deliciously […]

Tarras The Canyon Central Otago Pinot Noir 2014 $59

Just ten years on from launching his Tarras label, Hayden Johnston knows the trophy cabinet is already in need of reinforcement, groaning under the weight of increasingly hefty hauls of trophies and medals for his left-of-centre style of pinot noir.  The canyon has a distinctly meaty personality, black tea and toast notes, alongside comforting cherries […]

Heron’s Flight Matakana Dolcetto 2014 $60

Ultra-glossy in the glass, this tiny little outfit in Matakana specialise in inky-dark, Italian reds, sangiovese and dolcetto.  Only 100 cases were produced of this brightly fruited, herb-heavy wine, bursting with boysenberries, black olive, leather and a tweak of tobacco.  Fresh, tantalisingly toasty and boasts a deliciously chewy finish. Sip with: Pork cheek ragu on […]

Weaver Estate Central Otago Pinot Rosa 2014 $39

Pinot noir saignee juice (juice bled from the must) is fermented with wild yeasts and then aged for two years on lees in oak (whaat? That’s crazy talk for rosé!). But because of that, you get aromas of crab apple jam, melon, toasted cashew and berry blossom, plus it has great richness and substance.  Essentially, […]

Liberty Wines Les Vignes de L’eglise Merlot Grenache IGP Pays D‘OC 2014 $23 (3.5 stars)

IGP means ‘indication géographique protégée’ which is one of the new French classification terms.  It indicates some of the best value for money brands in the land, and I’ll tell you what, this is indeed a lithe little lovely from the Languedoc.  It’s not often you get a blend of merlot and grenache in your […]

La Valentina Colline Pescaresi Auha Fiano 2014 $39.50 (4 stars)

Gorgeously golden in the glass and bursting with daisy pollen and marzipan-like aromas, Fiano is an ancient grape that’s experiencing a modern renaissance.  I love the light peach, soft almond notes, its  bright, vibrant, mineral-driven mouthfeel and white pepper and freshly-baled hay layers on the finish. It’s an envelope-pusher of a white wine that’ll rock […]

Dopff & Irion Cuvée René Dopff Alsace Riesling 2014 $22 (4.5 stars)

Here’s a definite new favourite for me, because I adore this style of riesling that’s packed with pure lime and green apple on the nose, crushed shells and wet stones.  It’s a dry style, yet has some gloriously crunchy, natural sweetness allowing a round, citrus-focused mid-palate and a generously cleansing finish.  Love it! www.wineseeker.co.nz

Saint Clair Pioneer Block 17 Plateau Gimblett Gravels Merlot 2014 $32.90 (5 stars)

Incredibly bright on the nose, bursting with ripe boysenberry, plum cherry and sweetly spiced, smoky notes.  Here’s a deeply flavoured, rich  and satisfyingly fruity, with layers of leather and cocoa carrying through to the finish.  I love the refreshing, vibrant acidity and its gripping, yet supple tannins.  It’s a very precise yet plush and generous […]

Murphy Goode California Chardonnay 2014 $25

Super-creamalicous on the nose and palate, this is classic California chardonnay from Santa Rosa that I’m sure will appeal to both mama’s and the papa’s and cool kids alike.  Bursting with ultra-ripe peach, coconut, vanilla and layers of roasty-toasty almond, it’s also fresh, citrusy and a total trop-fest on the palate. Sip with: Baked, cornflake-coated […]

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