Saint Clair Premium Marlborough Pinot Noir 2015 $23.99 (5 stars)

Punchy and perfumed with black tea, spice and ripe plummy notes, this is a slippery, succulent, super-easy, red fruited refresher.  Fresh and youthful as opposed to those super-earthy, leathery, horsey, sweaty pinots that are out there.  Bright, breezy and easy-pleasy. www.glengarrywines.co.nz  

Hawkdun Rise HR Central Otago Pinot Noir 2014 $40 (4 star)

John Grant and Suzanne Bali-Grant run the Hawkdun Rise property on Letts Gully Road in Alexandra. Their HR pinot noir is floral and feisty on the nose, all raspberry tea and cherry. It’s a lighter style which shows soft waves of cherry and pomegranate that sneak up and grip you around the gums. Textural and […]

Neudorf Tom’s Block Nelson Pinot Noir 2015 $33

Opting to preserve every smidge of natural purity of flavour that viticulturist Richard Flatman has managed to coax into the pinot noir from Tom’s Block, winemaker Todd Stevens has bottled this wine without fining or filtration.  It’s paid off in that it’s bursting with black tea, wild raspberry and cherry layers that wrap around zesty […]

Hawkes Ridge Hawke’s Bay Pinot Noir 2013 $30 (4 stars)

One thing the RD9 district does supremely well, is grow great pinot noir. It’s where a large chunk of pinot is grown for some of New Zealand’s most famed sparkling wine bases. Julie and Douglas Haines have created a HUGE pinot noir here, with more meat on its bones than is typical, but it’s a […]

Mount Edward ‘Ted’ Central Otago Pinot Noir 2016 $34 (4.5 stars)

Nursed from the vineyard into the bottle by the talented twosome of Duncan Forsyth and Anna Riederer, this pinot noir is beautifully rich and bursting with hedgerow fruits, 5-spice, sandalwood and cocoa and tree bark.  Complex and mouthfilling, it’s like a leather-laden overload of earthiness and wild cherries. www.mountedward.co.nz

Giesen Vineyard Selection Marlborough Pinot Noir 2014 $17.99 (3.5 stars)

This is a super-approachable pinot noir that’s really starting to hit its straps with a couple of years aging on it.  Bright, plush and cherry-driven, it’s bursting with cherries, berries and has a soft, gamey layer on the finish.  Lovely, lengthy and darn drinkable. www.advintage.co.nz

Matahiwi Estate Wairarapa Pinot Noir 2016 $28 (4 stars)

I LOVE this wine. From the powerfully smoky, spiced cherry lift on the nose to the intensely fruity core and the long, succulent finish – it’s an absolute star. Buoyant raspberry, rhubarb, pomegranate and pepper characters: they’re all there, too! Grown near Masterton (the place where pinot noir was first planted 130 years ago), it’s […]

Vista Nelson Pinot Noir 2015 $22

Greg Dryden is a winemaker on a mission to spread the Nelson pinot love, and if this example is anything to go by, he’s becoming quite the guru!  Intensely spicy on the nose, and exhibiting all manner of forest floor, shitake mushroom, baked cherry and berry bodaciousness.  Plus it has a juicy mouthfeel, clean, precise […]

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 […]

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