Published NZ Herald Sat 7 Nov 2015


“Whaat?  Is it November already?”  I shrieked at my 15 year old.  “Yip. For realz” she mumbled from the couch.  “Really?” I said. “Legit as” was her reply.  “Forget November I sighed, I need a good wine with which to grieve the English language…”


Brancott Estate Brut NV $17Brancott Estate Brut Cuvee Chardonnay Pinot Noir

Gloriously nutty, lemon shortbread-like aromas waft forth and just command you to sip, in this cracker of a local methodé.  “Good, honest bubbles” were the first words that occurred to me when I tasted this recently because it’s so well crafted and oozes charm and elegance for such a wallet-friendly price.  Crisp acidity, a full, smooth mouthfeel and superb length of flavour brings it into the what’s-not-to-love section for me.  Widely available.


Drappier Carte d'OrChampagne Drappier Carte d’Or NV $49

This is such a pretty wine, pouring into the glass all shimmering soft gold, dazzling with the tiniest of pinprick bubbles snaking their way from the base to the rim.  It’s ethereally light, with lifted lemon and sweet almond biscuit aromas.  In the mouth it is generous, toasty and full, yet has beautiful balance, crispness and verve on the finish.  French fizz like this for less than fifty?  That’s outrageously good value for money in my book.



Petane Station Esk Valley Gewürztraminer 2014 $40Petane Station Gewurzt 2014 CMYK

I’m unashamedly a gewürztraminer slapper.  If I see a good one on a wine list (by the glass, mind you) I can’t not order it.  I float toward the gewurztraminer section at wine shops and supermarkets like an ant to jam, such is its hold over me.  This new release from Petane (pee-tarn-ee) Station is saturated with fresh ginger, lychee, jasmine and peach flavours.  It’s rich, generous and wraps itself around spicy food like a liquid pashmina.