Fantini Swarovski Abruzzo Gran Cuvée Bianco NV $26

Crafted from white varieties indigenous to the Abruzzo region, this wine is a new favourite fizz. I love the scent of fresh florals and apples alongside hints of mango and white peach on the nose. While it might be sweetly scented, the palate finishes crisp and dry. Clean and very pretty (complete with an authenticated […]

Maison Noire Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2016 $25 (4 stars)

For fans of a leaner, cleaner, more Chablis-style chardonnay then this’ll be right up your cul-de-sac I reckon.  Lemon and grapefruit goodness unveil on the nose, while spicy, citrus-soaked layers last long in the background.  Plus there’s a ribbon of creamy almond laced with soft smokiness on the finish to keep you going back for […]

Askerne Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2016 $31.90 (5 stars)

The perfume of this wine is so delicious it’s difficult to yank the glass away from your nose for long enough to actually sip it.  A hint of butterscotch merges with fresh nectarine, grapefruit and pineapple plushness on the nose and palate, while a zesty vein of spice and toasted crumpet joins them on the […]

Petane Station Esk Valley Chardonnay 2016 $30 (5 stars)

Philip Barber is a serious winemaking talent to watch if you’re a chardonnay fan.  With the ability to source fruit grown in the seashell-strewn soils of Esk Valley, thrust upwards after the 1931 Napier earthquake, his wines show incredibly complex minerality, texture and even a hint of delicious salinity.  I love the aromas of grilled […]

Coopers Creek Select Vineyards Guido In Velvet Pants Huapai Montepulciano 2014 $26.60 (4.5 stars)

Dubbed ‘Guido’ after winemaker Simon Nunn’s work mate and super-cute Italian greyhound, whereas the ‘velvet pants’ bit has something to do with Carmelite nuns likening this smooth, ‘westie’ version of the famous Italian variety to a slippery son of God if you believe the rumours. With its intense berries, spice, liquorice layers and fuzzy, warming, […]

Villa Maria Cellar Selection Gimblett Gravels Grenache 2016 $25 (4 stars)

This is literally the only grenache being produced in New Zealand, so best you get amongst it before its all gone! Crafted from 16-year-old vines growing in the company’s Ngakirikiri Vineyard, it’s a heaving monster of a wine, rammed with floral intensity and spiced berry and cherry flavours. The alcohol is 14.5% and its heat […]

Stone Paddock Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2014 $25 (3.5 stars)

With its attractive aromas of baked lemon cheesecake, creamy almonds and white peach, this is a delicate, focused chardonnay with a fine line of clean acidity and a long quartzy, citrussy finish. Get set for a zesty-fresh, Bridge Pa-grown glass of goodness as soon as you uncap this wine. Terrific with creamy smoked chicken and […]

Hãhã Reserve Marlborough Pinot Noir 2016 $27.99 (3.5 stars)

If you’re all about juiciness in your wine, then this is the sip for you. Soft tamarillo, cherry and rhubarb flavours combine to create a spicy, fruit-fest in your mouth. Savoury elements add a hint of earthy complexity to the wine, and fine-grained tannins give a hint of chew to the finish. www.hahawine.co.nz  

Tohu Rewa Marlborough Methode Traditionnelle Blanc de Blanc 2014 $29 (4 stars)

With its pale, lemon-gold colour, sexy, meringue-like mousse and finely-tuned, tiny beads, this wine looks like money in the glass. It stacks up in the taste stakes too. Soft lemon and panetone loaf aromas, biscuity boldness and its fresh, creamy finish make this chardonnaycentric fizz one of my favourites. www.glengarrywines.co.nz

The Family Company Gisborne Gewurztraminer 2017 $25

This wine erupts with lychee, mandarin, ginger and buckets of stonefruit on the nose and palate. It’s juicy, spicy and has a luxurious unctuosity about it. Gisborne is essentially the spiritual home of gewürztraminer in this country and this is testament to that. Stunning stuff indeed. Sip with: Pork, coriander and ginger pot stickers. www.thefamilywines.com […]

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