It’s not every day you get to taste 9yo Marlborough sauvignon blanc and pinot noir – but if the opportunity presents itself then leap on it I say! Foxes Island has just released The Artist Series – two limited edition library wines designed to profile a talented local artist but also to raise funds to assist the rebuild after Cyclone Gabrielle.

Founders John Belsham and Kelly Brown chose the work Sunbird Karaoke by artist Kirsty Black for the first release.

The collaboration with Milford Foundation further underscores the Series ethos. 20 per cent of wine sale proceeds will be donated to the Milford Foundation to help communities rebuild from the devastating effects of the 2023 floods and Cyclone Gabrielle in New Zealand.

“The 2014 vintage offered me the opportunity to create wines that express my love of architecture and design,” says winemaker, John Belsham. “Coupled with a cellar-ageing program that commenced with the first vintage in 1992, the wines have benefited from time; developing flavours that are deeply satisfying and sensual. They are wine styles that will naturally elicit conversation and foster new connections.”

The Pinot Noir has precise lines, and an elegant structure complemented by seamless layers of dark cherry, dusty red rose, earthy mushroom, and savoury spice that are focused and fine. 5,862 bottles were produced.

La Lapine is only declared in exceptional vintages and is considered one of the finest expressions of Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand. The wine offers flavours of white peach, warm citrus, and honeycomb, with underlying savoury layers that give depth and elegance. 3,033 bottles were produced.

Foxes Island Artist Series Marlborough La Lapine 2014 ($52)

There’s one style of sauvignon blanc that’s built for the long haul, and it’s this. Get the big goblets out, make sure it’s not too cold (I prefer this at room temp), and swirl as if your life depends on it. Oxygen will help it open up to reveal abundant intensity. Toasty, oaky complexity combines with layers of lemongrass, fennel, smoked passionfruit, and jalapeño. It’s a style that holds solid

minerality and acidity and sings with spring greens and leek gratin.

Available here

Foxes Island Artist Series Sunbird Karaoke Marlborough Pinot Noir 2014 ($67)

Nine years in the bottle has allowed this pinot to become plump and plush, laced with soothing spices and cocoa characters while still retaining firm cherry freshness, dried herb complexity, refreshing acidity and showing fine-grained, slippery tannins to finish.

Available here

 Foxes Island Wines.