Top shelf sometimes worth the expense of visiting

How one defines value for money is very individual, yet amidst belt-tightening I see others looking for quality, something experiential, the desire to spend their hard-earned cash on a truly classy experience.

Church Road are known and loved for wines across all price points, but these Icon Releases are the opportunity for their winemaking team to strut their stuff.

The highest quality fruit, lavished with care and attention, the finest oak barrels, built to last.

The price of admission is high, but these are stylish, beautifully crafted wines if you are seeking that top-end experience.


2021 Church Road No 1 Single Vineyard Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon

Price RRP $120
Rating Excellent to Outstanding

Beautiful ripe fruit yet not 
sweet, fragrant and floral, 
earthy tones, savoury 
aspects, a herbal twist 
with air. Floods the mouth 
with flavour, dark fruits, 
blackcurrant, dustiness, 
licorice, fine tannins, 
bright yet tangy acidity. 
For all its latent power 
there’s drinkability 
already. Struts its stuff 
with air, big, bold, 
deliciously chewy with a 
long, long crunchy close.


2021 Church Road No 1 Single Vineyard Gimblett Gravels Malbec

Price RRP $120
Rating Outstanding

Sweeter perfume, fine oak seasoning, 
chocolate, dustiness, 
more red-fruited, a leafy 
nuance. Sumptuous, 
lovely fruit depth, 
chocolate, coffee, 
hinting at dried herbs 
and cigar box with 
aeration. Super fine 
tannins, like peeling 
back sheaves of paper, 
become more grippy, 
power and intensity, ripe 
yet dry, open and 
expressive yet clearly 
gas in the tank for the 


2021 Church Road No 1 Redstone Vineyard Gimblett Gravels Merlot 

Price RRP $120
Rating Excellent

Graphite/lead pencil, perfume growing, 
earthy tones, plum and 
red fruits, scented oak. 
Dark chocolate, that 70% 
cocoa dustiness and 
bittersweet quality, 
almost a chalky quality to 
the tannins and texture 
and a cool vein running 
through the wine. 
Sweeter fruit notes more 
evident with time, the fruit 
swells to envelop the 
A long, fruit-filled close.


2021 Church Road No 1 Redstone Vineyard Gimblett Gravels Syrah 

Price RRP $120
Rating Excellent to Outstanding

Beguilingly fragrant nose, oak spices, 
black pepper, savoury, 
darker fruits. 
A lifted ethereality, fine, 
elegance and poise, while 
still youthfully taut, 
promises to open up. 
Spice and savoury 
elements swell, mixed 
berryfruits, stony 
minerality framed by fine-
grained tannins. 
Cooling freshness on the 
long close. 
More about potential than 


2020 Church Road Tom Hawke’s Bay Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 

Price RRP $220
Rating Outstanding Btl No 1863

A waft of milk chocolate, forest floor, 
leather, gravelly/schisty, 
coffee, florality, fragrance, 
fruit depth, a sense of 
volume and super 
Powerful, sumptuous, 
wonderful depth, darker 
and brooding fruit, 
chocolate and earthy 
tones, just endless length. 
Beautifully composed, 
effortless, quite the cellar 
candidate and speaks to its 
Magic stuff.


2021 Church Road Tom Hawke’s Bay Syrah 

Price RRP $220
Rating Outstanding Btl No 0898

Fragrance leaps from the glass, red-
fruited, leafy, mineral qualities, iron 
filings, violets. Savoury salami/
charcuterie influences on 
the palate, olive 
tapenade, red fruits, 
dances in the mouth, 
depth of flavour yet fine-
boned. Vibrancy and 
energy with delightful, 
cooling freshness. A long 
distance runner that grew 
superbly with aeration 
over a couple of days.