My notes on Obsidian Waiheke Island new releases…

Obsidian Reserve Waiheke Island Chardonnay 2017 $48 The stylish, chablis-like elegance of this wine makes it a showstopper for me. I love the purity of fruit, intense citrus, and minerality on the mid-palate, peachy backbone and the dusting of subtle nutty notes on the finish. It’s a beautifully balanced example and I’m officially obsessed with […]

J. Riehl Vin D’Alsace Riesling 2015 $19.99 (3.5 stars)

Classic Germanic riesling style here, with loads of green apple and manuka honey notes, a layer of herbaceousness and white pepper and a long, tangy finish. It’s a great introduction to Alsatian riesling that’s on the crisp, dry scale of the spectrum and it’s a good choice to sip with chickpea and paneer korma. www.winedirect.co.nz

Dominio de Heredia Rioja DOC 2015 $19.90

Super-smooth and masculine, like sniffing George Clooney after a wet shave, it’s all tobacco, man-sweat, saddle leather and desert dust. Wait. What was I talking about again? The wine! Yes. Tempranillo grapes were harvested, crushed, fermented, and aged for 12 months in new French oak barrels to bring on the smoky, prune, and pepper flavours […]

Osawa Wines Prestige Collection Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2015 $50 (4.5 stars)

Osawa’s chardonnay vines send their roots down deep into the soils on a river terrace about 30 minutes west of Hastings, where the boulders along the rows are so big they’re called “Mangatahi Swedes” by the local farmers. With aromas of grilled grapefruit, struck match, flinty intensity and lemony notes – it’s hard to pull […]

Redmetal Vineyards Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet Franc 2015 $19

Crafted from fruit grown in the iron-rich, red soils of the Bridge Pa Triangle, this is a gentle, easy-like-Sunday-morning red wine showing attractive red berry aromatics, a dusting of cocoa, plum and bay leaf. It’s a soft, quaffable blend that’ll please the crowds. Need a red wine for that wedding coming up? This could be […]

Bodega Tamari Mendoza Chardonnay 2015 $13.99

‘Tamari’ means ‘to be passionate in Huarpe, the native language of the Mendoza region in Argentina.  This chardonnay is on the leaner side, mineral-driven, nutty and has a squeak of crushed seashell and salt about it.  There’s a creamy element adding some complexity, however if you’re looking for fruit generosity and tropical flavours, then you’re not […]

Sacred Hill Hawke’s Bay Helmsman 2015 $80 (5 stars)

My first taste of this wine was a few years before the millennium and back then I was told the name represented something that led the way that stood ahead of the pack and steered you in the right direction. This new vintage lives up to its reputation of focus and drive. A Helmsman is […]

Fattoria Di Basciano Chianti Rùfina DOCG 2015 $25.80

Located in the foothills of the Apennine’s, Rùfina is the smallest subregion of Chianti but also on of the most well-known. This Basciano is heaving with succulent red fruits, dried herbs and liquorice layers. It is velvety, sexy, savoury and I love it! Fact: Chianti Rùfina can’t be released for 12 months after harvest, six […]

Grati Chianti Rùfina DOCG 2015 $22.80

This blend of 90% Sangiovese, 7% Canaiolo Nero and 3% Colorino is a lightly-styled, spicy red that will clear the nose and soothe the throat on the first smiff and sip. Wild strawberry, cherry and peppery notes on the nose lead to a soft, fruit-saturated mouthfeel and a suede-like finish. Sip with: Minestrone with prosciutto […]

Nautilus Southern Valleys Marlborough Pinot Noir 2015 $39 (4 stars)

Blended from a selection of Nautilus Wairau Valley vineyard sites, this is delicately scented, and elegantly poised on the palate. It is seriously smooth and supple, with red fruits like pomegranate, raspberry, red cherry and redcurrant just peaking their pretty faces above the core of savoury, earthy flavours. Soft, plush and perfect with duck liver […]

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