Villa Maria Reserve Library Release Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 $69.99 (5stars)

Eight years on from harvest and this straight cabernet still bright, buoyant and incredibly fresh.  I love how plucky and precise the fruit is, the berry and plum definition is just lovely and an injection of smoky cedar really fleshes out this delicious experience.  This is great kiwi cabernet right here and it’s a treat […]

Villa Maria Reserve Library Release Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2009 $69.99 (4.5 stars)

Purple-black and gorgeously glossy in the glass, this is a deliciously dense, berry-saturated cabernet blend edged with bouquet garni herbs and cocoa characters.  Softly peppered, fleshy and plump in the mouth and boasting a line of black olive, bay and smoke, it’s a big blend with real pluck and personality. www.villamaria.co.nz

Clearview Estate Hawke’s Bay Old Olive Block 2015 $39 (4 stars)

Here’s a rumpty, ribsticking blend of cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, malbec and merlot from talented winemaking duo Matt Kirby and Rob Bregman.  It’s inky-dark and boosted with aromas of blackcurrant leaf, cocoa powder, intense cherry and berry notes and a pinch of pepper.  Succulent and juicy to drink, there’s a line of herbaceousness that cloaks […]

Elephant Hill Hieronymus 2013

Elephant Hill Hieronymus 2013 $95 ★★★★★ Named after a famous ancestor of the Weiss family, Hieronymus Ebner von Eschenbach (Lord Mayor of Nuremberg 1514-1524 apparently) – this inaugural release of a flagship red is a blend of the best Cabernet Sauvignon (60%), Malbec (20%) and Merlot (20%) from their Gimblett and Bridge Pa Triangle Vineyards that they […]

Alpha Domus AD The Aviator 2013

Alpha Domus AD The Aviator 2013 $72 ★★★★★ 2013 heralds the Aviator’s ninth vintage and it’s got real style. Bright, glossy, juniper berry colour in the glass and scented with red rose, pepper and dusty oak complexity. In the mouth it’s saturated with fleshy black fruits, fresh spice and smoke flavours, edged with elegant acidity […]

Pask Gimblett Road Cabernet Merlot Malbec 2013

Pask Gimblett Road Cabernet Merlot Malbec 2013 $22 ★★★★ Brace yourself for pepper, leather, plum, fresh boysenberry and leafy aromatics which lead to a palate loaded with red berries, cranberry, pomegranate, dried sage and a dusting of dark cocoa powder.  Super-fresh, youthful acidity combined with attractive grip on the finish makes this an affordable wine […]

Sacred Hill Helmsman 2010

Sacred Hill Helmsman 2010 $85 ★★★★★ 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.  A Helmsman is released only in years when the […]

Newton Forrest Cornerstone 2010

Newton Forrest Cornerstone 2010 $60 ★★★★★ Glossy and gorgeous in the glass, but prepare to be seduced by the hot-cross bun and Christmas pudding perfume.  If you can tear your nose away from the glass for long enough to sip – you’ll be rewarded with buxom berry and chocolate flavours  and a smooth, velvety texture.  […]

Babich Irongate Gimblett Graves Cabernet Merlot Franc 2010

Babich Irongate Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Merlot Franc 2010 $35 ★★★★★ Intense red rose, berry and seasoned leather aromas open up to punchy plum flavours and a deliciously warming, medicinal mouthfeel.  I love how poised and elegant this wine is, and the persistence of flavour is just outstanding. www.babichwines.co.nz 

Yalumba ‘The Reserve’ 2001

 Yalumba ‘The Reserve’ 2001 $128  Impenetrable, squid ink colour, and for an 11 year old wine it’s still so incredibly fresh with sweet cocoa, christmas pudding spices, exotically rich and densely concentrated dark fruit flavours.  A blend of Barossa-sourced Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz which is only made in exceptional vintages, it’s a wine that’s really […]

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