Alpha Domus Special Reserve ‘The Aviator’ Hawke’s Bay 2016 $69

This is the flagship Bordeaux blend for the Alpha Domus team led by winemaker Barry Riwai, and this vintage is a blend dominated by cabernet sauvignon that’s boosted by cabernet frand, merlot and malbec from the famous, iron-rich, red gravels of the Bridge Pa Triangle winegrowing region 10mins west of Hastings.  Glossy and garnet-red in the glass, it hoists heavenly aromas of boysenberry, cocoa, pomegranate and christmas cake up the nostrils and floods the palate with layers of red fruits, cherries, dark berries and blackcurrant characters, silky-textured and velvety to sip, the power sneaks up seconds after you take each sip, leaving you under no illusions as to where the backbone comes from.  Layers of leather flecked with gunpowder reveal themselves on the finish.