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Gins from across the world are judged in nine categories, including London Dry, Navy Strength, Contemporary, Botanical, Sloe and more.
Our local No 8 Distillery won the Best in Country award in the Contemporary Style Gin category for their No8 Horopito Gin; also picking up a Bronze for their Dunners Gin.
No8 Distillery is moving to a new premises in Hanover St, and once fully settled in and operational, plans to open to the public.
Four Barrels Wine Trail takes a pause
The popular Four Barrels Wine Trail on the edge of Cromwell will take a winter break from mid-February until October. Aurum winery is closed and Scott Base cellar door will temporarily close to facilitate renovations.
Alongside this, significant roadworks with two new roundabouts being built will cause disruption in the area, though a planned pedestrian underpass from Cromwell to the Wooing Tree subdivision, once completed, will make crossing this busy section of highway safer and easier for trail users.
The Misha’s Vineyard and Wooing Tree cellar doors will remain open as normal.
Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine NZ Winemaker of the Year
Gourmet Traveller Wine magazine has been running a winemaker of the year competition for Australian winemakers for more than 20 years and in 2018 instigated a New Zealand category.
Past winners have included Dom Maxwell (Greystone) 2018, Helen Masters (Ata Rangi), 2019, Jen Parr (Valli) 2020 and Jules Taylor (Jules Taylor) in 2021.
The 2022 winner is Nicholas Brown from Black Estate winery in Waipara. Farmed organically and biodynamically, Black Estate produces pinot noir, chardonnay, riesling, along with smaller quantities of pet-nat, chenin blanc and cab franc.
Price RRP $36
Attractive and engaging nose highlighting nectarine, white peach and refined oak. The peach and cooler stonefruit interplay continues, with a vein of lemony
citrus keeping this bright.
Deceptively rich in the mouth, packed with flavour, developing nice creaminess with a spice-inflected close. A pronounced tanginess to the acidity could make this an excellent food choice.
Price RRP $39.99
Attractive oak scents, bonfire embers, peach, spices, rather ‘‘classic’’. An oily/glycerol feel on entry, rich and mouthfilling, then the acidity races in reminding you of its spine.
White peach, spices, an oatmealy character, nice energy to this with a long, zesty finish. Pulls into itself a little, reminding you of its youth, but everything is here to blossom in the bottle.
2019 Elephant Hill Sea Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay
Price RRP $59
Rating Excellent to Outstanding
Oak scents lead, a charry touch moves to bread dough, nuttiness and straw, fruit in support.
The nose suggests density, yet there’s a coolness running through this, the evident fatness whipped into line by a shaft of lemon and ripe grapefruit, flowing to a nutty and oatmeal finish.
More and more expressive with aeration, grows superbly, depth, vivacity, draws you in.