Central Otago’s Grasshopper Rock is located in Alexandra, a sub-region chosen (according to the GR website) for being the most world’s most southerly, the driest in NZ, and the one that experiences the biggest diurnal temperature shift (Alexandra has also recorded New Zealand’s hottest and coldest temperatures). Extreme to say the least. So it always…
The recent arrival of a couple of high profile 2018 Hawke’s Bay chardonnays piqued my interest and I thought it might be interesting to add a couple of other 2018s from different regions. It turned out to be a mini masterclass in the stylistic debate that has been raging around chardonnay the past few years.
For a team as experienced as the Dog Pointers (surely some of the most consistently capable of hands) it would take a catastrophic upset for the wines to be anything other than excellent. So when the year’s new releases arrived from the winery there was an initial fleeting thought; “do we actually need to review these or shall we just drink them?”
Long regarded as one of NZ’s icon wineries, under the direction of Chief winemaker Wilco Lam Dry River’s wines seem to have taken on a more animated character. These are not wines that walk on the wild side, and are definitely made to be cellared, but there seems to be more spirit in each bottle, the wines no longer buffed and polished within an inch of their lives.
Ata Rangi Pinot Noir regularly graces the lists of top New Zealand wines, the likely legacy of great vineyards, increasing vine age, continuity of people and the assured hand of winemaker Helen Masters. The most recent releases of the flagship estate pinot and its sibling ‘Crimson’ deliver poised and delicious but never showy wines.