Mount Brown Barrique Ferment Waipara Sauvignon Blanc 2016 $19 (3.5 stars)

Here’s a sauvignon blanc for chardonnay fans. Roasty, toasty and tropically taut and crisp, it’s bursting with smoked passionfruit punchiness and a lick of lemongrass on the finish. A very drinkable, in fact dangerously drinkable example. www.mountbrown.co.nz

Mount Brown Waipara Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2016 $16 (3.5 stars)

There’s something about the North Canterbury soils and the drying, Nor’west winds that create incredibly floral, super-concentrated sauvignon blanc. Lime, lemongrass, elderflower and bruised basil combine with passionfruit and tropical tones, cut grass and sweet pea combine with crunchy acidity to make a zesty, sexy sip indeed. www.mountbrown.co.nz  

Pegasus Bay Waipara Chardonnay 2015 $39.00

If you can catch a whiff of struck match on your first sniff then welcome to the world of sulphide complexity, something I love to see a little bit of in my chardonnay. With smoked pineapple, grapefruit and grilled peach characters zigzagging across the palate and erupting on the finish – it’s a super stylish […]

Greystone Waipara Chardonnay 2015 $39.00

It’s been 11 years since the Thomas family first put vines in the ground at Greystone and then harvested for this vintage. The chardonnay is now really hitting its straps. Rich and golden in the glass and smelling of, oh lord, just the most delicious melange of almond biscuits rubbed with grapefruit pith and dipped […]

Black Estate Circuit Waipara Chardonnay 2016 $24.00

If you’re looking for a chardonnay bursting with hazelnut, citrus and hints of toast and smoke then this is for you. North Canterbury has real talent for producing chardonnay showing sensational minerality. Combine that with a skilled winemaker who can create creamy, nutty notes in the palate spectrum – then you’ve got a great little […]

Silver Wing Waipara Chardonnay 2014 $27.00

Andrew Fox is one of the new players in Waipara, and he funds his tiny winemaking venture by being a builder and renovator during the week. One thing’s for sure, he can definitely buildreally interesting chardonnay. Creamy, nutty marshmallow notes and hints of grapefruit give it fruit saturation, while the wild yeast fermentation and philosophy […]

Torlesse Cassis Liqueur 375ml $20 (4 stars)

Oh wow! Blackcurrant alert! This 18% alc liqueur is super-fresh, incredibly precise, pure fruit and a lovely, grippy, tangy texture to finish. Delicious on its own as a sexy little tipple, or mix it with lemonade or soda water, enormous ice cubes and a sprig of mint or basil to boost it. Gorgeous stuff indeed. […]

Torlesse Reserve Tawny Port 375ml $20 (3.5 stars)

Kym Rayner at Torlesse in North Canterbury began a port solera system in 1992 meaning that today, his non-vintage tawny port releases contain wine components from barrels that are up to 25 years old! Think rich, dried sultanas and currants, sweet leather and buckets of spice that lead to a long, caramelized finish. www.torlesse.co.nz

Black Estate Home Chardonnay 2016 $45 (4 stars)

The Home Vineyard sits 6 kilometres north east of the Waipara Junction, in the Omihi sub-district of North Canterbury’s Waipara Valley. The un-grafted, Mendoza-clone chardonnay vines this wine was made from were planted in 1994 and since 2010 have been grown using organic and biodynamic practices, resulting in a wine oozing grilled citrus, layers of […]

Silver Wing Nada Preservative Free Waipara Syrah Rosé 2017 $27

Here’s a rosé made from 100% handpicked, whole bunch pressed syrah from Andrew Fox’s vineyard, where it’s fermented with wild yeasts and spends 5 months in barrel to introduce extra complexity.  A portion of original juice was snap-frozen at pressing and then added back to the wine at bottling to kickstart a second ferment in […]

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