Kiwi wines strut their stuff

The last fortnight has been a hectic and important one for the New Zealand wine industry, with the Central Otago Pinot Noir Celebration (COPNC) in Queenstown, the NZ Wine Sommit in Hawke's Bay, the International Sauvignon Blanc Celebration in Marlborough and the Chardonnay and Sparkling Symposium in Gisborne all now done and dusted.

A sizeable contingent of trade, media, social media influencers and sommeliers from overseas have had the opportunity to mingle with local counterparts, winery staff, wine trade and eager consumers, while tasting our best and finest, furthering their knowledge and becoming ambassadors for our wines.

Most of the following would have been tasted at the COPNC.





2017 Providore Central Otago Pinot Noir
Price: $39
Rating: Very good to excellent

Very boldly fruited nose of raspberry & plum with smoke & toast nuances, becoming Syrah like with time. Really ripe, sweet berry compote and spice, powerful, concentrated with hints of plum, tobacco and leaf. Powerful tannins to match that are sappy and grippy for now, needing a little time to integrate.

This is a big wine and unabashedly hedonistic.



2017 Te Kano Central Otago Pinot Noir
Price: $65
Rating: Excellent to outstanding

Bold dark cherry fruit leaps from the glass, toast too. This balances power without weight, intensity to the fruit with fine tannic grip. Elegance here, the wine filling the mouth, flowing to a long, dry, lip-smacking finish.

Time sees this become more brooding, showing its youth perhaps, while it develops a piquant sweet & sour note that adds to the interest.



2017 Felton Road Block 3 Pinot Noir
Price: $109
Rating: Outstanding 

A little struck match leads, cherry notes flirting with raspberry. Sweet fruit entry, cherry, ripe red fruits, smoke, developing wild herb and juniper notes with time. The fruit power initially disguises the tannins, which show their intent with aeration. Wonderful balance, fruit intensity and complexity flowing to a delightfully long finish. 

Super stuff, time will be a good friend here.



2016 Grasshopper Rock Earnscleugh Pinot Noir
Rating: Excellent

A brightness to the nose, notes of cherry, plum, smoke and earth, wild herbs in the background. Bright, youthful cherry and darker fruits in the mouth, matched by sappy, zesty acidity and powerful chewy tannins.

The fruit builds in the glass, showing surprising power, with great carry on the long finish. Still very youthful, but with great promise.


2017 Felton Road Bannockburn Pinot Noir
Price: $68
Rating: Excellent to outstanding

Smoke, darker fruits, a hint of wildness, a caramel note. Silky and creamy on entry, adding blueberry, earth and savoury notes as the wine opens up, neatly balanced by bright acidity and deceptively powerful tannic grip.

Lots of complexity and interest, this fills the mouth, and while it shows immediate drinkability, the best is clearly yet to come.



2013 Bristol Farm Central Otago Pinot Noir
Rating: Very good to excellent

Perfumed nose at first, moving to lead pencil, wild herb and savoury notes; hints of wood polish later. This maintains a fragrance to the palate, with lovely florality, mineral nuances and smoky elements, the mix of red and dark fruits building nicely, with a wild herb/stalk note adding interest.

Good structure and nicely judged tannins leading to an excellent, silky finish.

Add a Comment