Black Stilt Waitaki Valley Riesling 2014 $22 (3.5 stars)

Waitaki sits on the border of North Otago and South Canterbury, and it’s one of the most remote and raw parts of the country.  It has a kind of other-worldly feel to it, and the quality of the wines that come from the lime-laden soils of Richie McCaw country have power, purity and personality to […]

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 […]

Montana Winemakers Reserve Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2016 $16.99 (3.5 stars)

Sick of sauvignon that’s all sweet passionfruit, armpit sweat and OTT with the capsicum and cats pee? Fret no longer, this puppy has a lift of white peach, lemongrass, basil and limey loveliness alongside a vein of quartzy minerality in the mouth. It’s lean, clean, tidy and darn tasty. Available in supermarkets.  

Baron Philippe De Rothschild Mapu Merlot 2015 $20.50 (3.5 stars)

This is a moreish little merlot from Rothschild’s Chilean wine operation that hits the quaffable spot. Savoury, roasting pan juices, pepper and baked plum and berry flavours combine with grippy, dusty tannins and a lengthy, leathery finish. Nice and meaty – classic South American characters here. www.kahurangiwine.com

Giesen Vineyard Selection Hawke’s Bay Merlot 2014 $17 (3.5 stars)

Here’s a cracking good, chocolately merlot that’s stitched together with prune, pepper, red berries and all manner of spicey niceness. The tannins have just the right amount of chew and the acidity has just the right amount of pucker. It’s a satisfying, saucy, sexy little sip indeed. www.finewinedelivery.co.nz

Serbal Mendoza Malbec Rosé 2015 $25 (3.5 stars)

If sweet rosé wines are not your thing, fret not. I’ve hunted high and low to address that issue and have found a little star you’ll love because it’s lipsmackingly lean and dry. Malbec rosé is not common and yet the team at Serbal are clearly experts in creating sophisticated, South American style rose that […]

Natural Wine Co. Organic Gisborne Gewurztraminer 2015 $19.99 (3.5 stars)

This is about as natural as it gets for gewurztraminer production. Nicola and Geoff Wright are organic pioneers in Gisborne and alongside not adding any herbicides, insecticides or fungicides, they’re also not adding any yeast, opting instead for wild, ‘natural’ yeasts to conduct the ferment. This results in a funkier, dryer style, laced with lychee […]

Gladstone Vineyard Gladstone Pinot Gris 2016 $25 (3.5 star)

Aged on its yeast lees (what’s left over once the yeast finishes fermenting), this Wairarapa-grown gris is deliciously dry, lean, clean and shows an edge of apple skin, nashi juice and white pepper.  There’s a splash of citrus on the finish and it’s got some good persistence on the palate.  Grown organically and clearly there’s […]

Liberty Wines Les Vignes de L’eglise Merlot Grenache IGP Pays D‘OC 2014 $23 (3.5 stars)

IGP means ‘indication géographique protégée’ which is one of the new French classification terms.  It indicates some of the best value for money brands in the land, and I’ll tell you what, this is indeed a lithe little lovely from the Languedoc.  It’s not often you get a blend of merlot and grenache in your […]

Maison Noire Hawke’s Bay Albarino 2016 $22 (3.5 stars)

Guillaume Thomas & Esther Smith are two of the nicest new wine growers I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. They’re young, ultra-industrious and always gun for the best.  They’ve planted a tiny little vineyard high up on the Waimarama Road and turn out stunning examples of wine like this local incarnation of the spanish classic. […]

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