Crafted out in Mangatahi, on terraces high above the Ngaruroro river in the Maraekakaho area of Hawke’s Bay, it’s a seriously fragrant, cherry and dried herb-hefty style from a brand so small and under the radar, they’re practically subterranean. There’s a black tea and cranberry character on the mid-palate, fine-grained tannins and a long, elegantly structured finish. I love it. The winery was named ‘Wairiki’ because it means ‘little water’ in Te Reo Māori. “We are Wairiki because our land is blessed with a small stream that runs through it in Winter” says owner Brent Linn, who has been quietly working on his vineyard project for ten years to get the first wines released. Local winemaker Roland Norman of Tukipo River Estates helped him shepherd the wine from vine to bottle and he’s done a nice job indeed.