Not content with farming grapes and making wine, they have created a new cellar door in Clyde for tasting along with an outdoor bar and seating, accommodation and amenities blocks, children’s playground, petanque court, a food trailer, educational vineyard, olive grove, heritage orchard and more. An underground cave/ageing cellar doubling as a function and event centre should be open early next year, while an onsite winery is scheduled for the following year.
Blind Chicken Wine Competition
Late October saw the 2023 edition of the Blind Chicken Wine Competition take place.
An ever-eager bunch sat down to sip, spit and ponder a lineup of wines selected as per tradition by last year’s winner, Brendon Woodford.
Competition founder David Tasker showed his pedigree to win the trophy this year, one point ahead of Roger Swift. Yours truly and Julie Clark were a further point back in third-equal.
David gets the job of devising next year’s competition.
2022 Te Kano Waitaki chardonnay
Rather engaging nose with nutty and toffee
elements, ripe tropical fruits and spices. Fills
the mouth nicely, those ripe tropical fruits to the
fore with a nutty undercurrent that frames the
long close, while lively and vibrant acidity gives
this a cooling feel. Combines richness with
freshness. Grows with air, dances in the
mouth, a refreshing piquant counterpoint on
2021 Nockie’s Palate Waitaki Valley chardonnay
Rating Very good to excellent
The nose jumps out of the glass, ripely tropical
fruit hinting at mango, minerally, stony notes,
smoke, gaining straw and dried pineapple with
aeration. There is a taut, upright quality to this
with a chalky mouthfeel and chewy tannins
assuaged by the richly ripe fruit. A fascinating
contrast between super-ripe fruit, and a
bittersweet, tangy, zesty close.
2021 River-T Estate Waitaki Valley pinot noir
The nose evolves from smoke, to wild herbs, to
sweet fruit (rhubarb and, perhaps, plum) to
perfume. Expressive palate, plum and cherry,
smoke, wisps of char, herbs, a savoury quality;
later stony gravels and black tea joining in. A
grainy, chewy feel to the tannins, this deftly
hits the balance between ripe fruit and
structure. Juicy, a delightfully long,