House of Ball Waipara Pinot Noir 2014

House of Ball Waipara Pinot Noir 2014 $41  Crafted by the husband and wife team of Julian and Lynda Ball, just 200 bottles were made of this bright, spicy, classic North Canterbury pinot noir.  Most of it is soaked up by their lucky B&B Guests, but if you contact them quick you could be in […]

Anciano Old Vines 35yo Garnacha 2015

Anciano Old Vines 35yo Garnacha 2015 $19.99 Here’s a comfortingly rich, round and rumpty Spanish Garnacha made from 35 y.o. vines from Calatayud.   Made by Norrel Robertson MW, it’s scented with cough drop characters, Irish Moss, anise, dutch cocoa and hints of saddle leather – all of which saturate onto the palate.  The acidity is fresh, finely tuned […]

Three Dark Horses Frank Ernest McLaren Vale Shiraz 2015 $50 (4.5 stars)

The three ‘dark horses’ are Matt Broomhead, his father and his grandfather Frank, who all decided on a handshake to go into the wine growing caper together around 8 years ago. This deeply inky shiraz is sourced from 70 year old bush vines grown in their Romano vineyard. Wild-fermented with 20% whole clusters and matured […]

Sons of Eden Selene Barossa Valley Tempranillo 2014 $54.95 (5 stars)

The ‘sons’ happen to be young winemakers Corey Ryan and Simon Cowham and they’ve named this wine after the Greek Goddess of the moon, fertility and productivity, which is all very lovely. However I really love the aromas of dark berries and salted caramel, saddle leather and its whiff of old sawmill. It’s also incredibly […]

Massena The Moonlight Run Barossa Valley Mataro Grenache Shiraz 2016 $41 (4 stars)

With its clutch of 5-star endorsements from wine critics around the globe, this Rhone-style blend from the mad but brilliant folk at Massena, is just the ticket for hot August nights (yes it’s winter, but I’ve always wanted to weave a Neil Diamond lyric into a tasting note). Inky-dark, earthy, spice-driven and soaked through with […]

Moi Wines Waimauku Cabernet Franc 2015 $32

Young winemaker Renée Dale managed to secure some rare cabernet franc fruit from the Twin Totara vineyard out in Waimauku, and then rose every day at 4am to plunge the ferment before heading over to her other job at Westbrook Wines. Were those red-eye starts worth it? Yessir! The palate has glorious dark berries, blackcurrant, […]

Domaine Boutinot Les Six Cairanne 2014 $45

‘Les Six’ is a new, six-grape style of Cairanne (an appellation in the Rhone) featuring Cairanne Noir (Grenache) 40%, Mourvèdre 15%, Syrah 15%, Carignan Noir 10%, Cinsault 10%, Counoise 10%. Hand-picked grapes are co-fermented with wild yeasts aided by manual pigeage (punching down), gentle remontage (pumping over) and maturation in tronconiques (large oak vats) for […]

Bannock Brae Goldfields Central Otago Pinot Noir 2016 $35

This new vintage is un-fined and unfiltered, so you’re simply getting pure flavours of cherry, baked strawberry, wild thyme, tamarillo and hedgerow fruit notes. Grown in the desert-scape of Bannockburn’s Cairnmuir Road, this is a gorgeously gamey, elegant pinot noir with soft, fruit leather layers and deserves to be consumed by pinot noir lovers across […]

Pukeora Estate Ruahine Range ‘The Benches’ 2013 $28

From what was heralded as the ‘vintage of the century’ comes this powerfully built blend of merlot, malbec, syrah and cabernet sauvignon from the limestone-laden hills of Central Hawke’s Bay. Sweet saddle-leather, pepper, mocha, hints of prune, liquorice and showing bold, juicy tannins – it’s a muscular, sinewy sip that has loads of life in […]

van Asch Pyro Central Otago Syrah 2009 $40 (3.5 stars)

Nine years on from harvest and this wine is a freak of nature for two reasons. The first being that it’s syrah grown in one of the southernmost winegrowing regions in the world (highly unusual) and when a fire ripped through the winery not long after vintage, just a couple of barrels of syrah were […]

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