Mills Reef Bespoke Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon Cabernet Franc 2015 ($39.99)

After decades of delivering some of New Zealand’s most highly awarded wines, Tim Preston and his team have decided to let loose with the creative juices and put together some wines/blends that differ from their mainstream range. This blend of 63% cabernet sauvignon and 27% cabernet franc has a heft of dried herbs, pepper and […]

Opawa Marlborough Pinot Noir 2016 $27 (4 stars)

This wine has those glorious, mysterious hedgerow and forest-floor type flavours that send me into a little swoon and yet, the wallet remains calm and happy. Opawa means ‘smoky river’ in Maori, and the vineyard is located in what was the riverbed of the old Opawa River. It’s crafted by Brett Birmingham and the talented […]

Homer Marlborough Pinot Noir 2016 $21.50 (3.5 stars)

Ultra-savoury, almost marmitey and meaty, this certified organic marlborough pinot noir has been shepherded into the bottle by winemaker Rebecca Salmond. Strong, muscular tannins give cheek-suckingly complex texture and add oomph to the shedload of spices already present. There’s a lot going on in this wine so make sure you’ve got some serious protein handy […]

Moana Park SVR Gimblett Road Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2015 $45 (4 stars)

If you’re a fan of violets with vavoom and buckets of black pepper, then it’s all here in this wine. Newly released, this syrah from New Zealand’s most famous red wine soils, is incredibly youthful and spicy, with a seam of sarsaparilla and soy sneaking through it also. The tannins have good chew and add […]

Moana Park SVR Central Otago Pinot Noir 2015 $45 (4 stars)

This is one of those pinot’s which oozes savoury, meaty, earthy aromas, yet as soon as it’s sipped, a tsunami of spice tends to drown the tastebuds in the nicest way of course. This is the first time I’ve tasted a Central Otago wine made by this vegan & vegetarian-friendly producer, and it’s a nicely […]

Man O’War Waiheke Cabernet Franc Merlot Malbec Petit Verdot 2014 $28 (4 stars)

Winemaker Duncan McTavish has stitched together a gorgeously bold blend of four Bordeaux varieties from their sun-baked vineyards overlooking Man O’War Bay. 18 months in oak has unleashed powerful aromas of blackcurrant, liquorice and spice that osmose into an invitingly soft palate packed with dark berries, bay leaf, chocolate and coffee and finishing with delicately […]

Alex K Big Back Yard Waipara Pinot Noir 2014 $24 (4 stars)

Crafted by the talented team at Kalex wines from fruit grown in north Canterbury, there’s a spice, soy and black olive note which wraps around the cherry and berry characters beautifully. It’s also got that gorgeous, hedgerow fruits and earthy, mossy character that I really love in great Central Otago pinot noir. There’s even a […]

Baron Philippe De Rothschild Mapu Merlot 2015 $20.50 (3.5 stars)

This is a moreish little merlot from Rothschild’s Chilean wine operation that hits the quaffable spot. Savoury, roasting pan juices, pepper and baked plum and berry flavours combine with grippy, dusty tannins and a lengthy, leathery finish. Nice and meaty – classic South American characters here. www.kahurangiwine.com

Graham Norton’s Own Shiraz 2017 $18.99 (4.5 stars)

So our favourite Irish tv personality has teamed up with two kiwi guys from Invivo wines to produce a shiraz from South Australia – how’s that for multinational relations! This is a bonza little bottle that’s deliciously spicy and saturated with blackcurrant and plum flavours and fleshed out with muscular, yet woolly tannins. A bit […]

Matt Connell Rendition Central Otago Pinot Noir 2016 $44

Matt’s one of the region’s most highly awarded winemakers and this is his solo pinot project after tenure at Olssens and Akarua. Produced from fruit grown in Bendigo and Lowburn, it’s bottled with a label designed by Taranaki artist Andrew J Steel, whose depicted Matt’s ‘meaningful things’ (expect dogs, fish, goats, guns etc..) Oozing savoury […]

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