Julia Child once said “I love to cook with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food”.  She also said “Every woman should own a blowtorch”. I miss Julia.

Stonecroft Gimblett Gravels Gewürztraminer 2015 $25

This organically produced wine is golden and glossy in the glass and absolutely heaves with heady spices, musky pot pourri and Turkish delight aromas. On the palate it’s defiantly dry, boasting a touch of flinty, mineral and ginger-edged heat, layers of ripe stonefruit and has a long, indulgently exotic finish.

Sip with: Saag Chicken Tikka Marsala www.stonecroft.co.nz

Soho ‘Maren’ Marlborough Riesling 2015 $26

Woah Nelly! This is a lime-laden kick in the face, a gum-numbingly fresh little riesling designed to put your tastebuds into a tangelo-laced tangle in seconds flat. At 11.6% alcohol there’s a squeak of sweetness, but it’s mostly bony-dry. If James Rowan continues to turn out sensational riesling like this, pretty soon someone will put a price on his head.

Sip with: Salt & Pepper Squid www.sohowineco.com

Mudbrick Reserve Syrah 2014 $60

Fresh peppercorn, cherry, violet, pomegranate and liquorice layers kind of ‘peacocks tail’ it out across the palate, leaving dried herb and dark berry flavours cloaked in furry tannins. Unlike some Waiheke syrahs that tend to the chunky side, this is an elegant example – the cigarette pants of syrah if you were to get fashionista on it.

Sip with: Braised beef shortribs www.mudbrick.co.nz