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 […]

Te Mania Three Brothers Nelson Merlot/Malbec/Cab Franc 2015 $24.99

Winemaker Steve Gill has outdone himself here, creating a cheek-slappingly good Bordeaux-style red blend from supremely ripe Nelson fruit. Heaving at the seams with dense, dark berryfruit, juicy Christmas pudding spices, smoky oak, ultra-ripe berryfruit and red apple. I’m guilty of not thinking of Nelson when it comes to sourcing bold, merlot-based wines – but […]

Maimai Creek Hawke’s Bay Merlot/Cabernet Franc 2013 $23.99

Mal McLennan has been operating his vineyards in Meeanee and Bridge Pa since 1994, growing grapes for other people. His fruit was in such high demand, that he decided in 2002 to have a crack at making his own wine and Maimai Creek was born. Mal is extremely hands-off with his grapes and this blend […]

Askerne Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet Franc Cabernet Sauvignon Malbec 2015 $22.70 (4 stars)

Fans of softly structured, fleshy, fabulous merlot-dominated reds can kick off their shoes, flick on the telly and pour a glass of this and be confident that it’ll deliver in every respect. Dark red fruits, peppery, cocoa and dried herb characters, deliciously dusty tannins and a long, fresh finish make this a must sip with […]

Sacred Hill Brokenstone 2015 $42.99 (5 stars)

With a name taken from an old Sacred Hill vineyard known as ‘stoney broke’, the Brokenstone is now considered one of New Zealand’s most iconic merlot-based reds.  The 2015 is a blend of merlot, malbec, syrah, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc and it’s absolutely sensational.  Matured for 19 months in French oak, layers of cedar, […]

Craggy Range Gimblett Gravels Te Kahu Merlot Blend 2014 $27 (4.5 stars)

If red meat is on the menu this Christmas, then tell your guests to grab a goblet of this and giddy up!  The rich, velvety blackfruited texture of this merlot-dominant wine wraps itself around the palate in a spicy, cocoa-driven cloak (or ‘te kahu’ in Maori) and leaves glorious, festively furry tannins on the finish. […]

Main Divide Waipara Merlot Cabernet 2014

Main Divide Waipara Merlot Cabernet 2014 $20 ★★★½ If you thought only the North Island could create good Bordeaux-style reds then best you wrap your gums around this southern sip pronto.  Highly fruity on the nose and all manner of raspberry, boysenberry and spicy, cocoa-like characters crash across the palate.  Yet the mouthfeel and finish […]

Nikau Point Select Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Nikau Point Select Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 $13.99 ★★½ The Nikau Point brand has recently been given a spruce up, meaning it looks a tad more stylish on the table, which is always a good thing with a sub-$15 bottle.  This is a lightweight red that has layers of dried herb, berry and spice […]

Snapper Rock Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet 2013

Snapper Rock Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet 2013 $16.95 ★★★★ Well I for one did a little dance after tasting this wine because not only is it bright and berry-stacked on the nose, but it’s loaded with plum, boysenberry and attractive vanilla, spice and smoky notes on the palate.  It’s a warm, cuddly, silky and slippery […]

Alpha Domus The Navigator 2013

Alpha Domus The Navigator 2013 $30 ★★★★½ Blackberry, boysenberry, dark quava and intensely aromatic spice notes burst from the glass. Comprised of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, malbec and petit verdot, this classic Bordeaux blend displays a delicious vein of dried herb and cocoa buoyed by fresh juicy acidity and good grip on the finish. […]

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