Tagged with 'villa maria'

Wines for Christmas

First Glass 5 December 2018 
Last Tasting of the Year
Notes by Sue Courtney
Wines were tasted blind

Jean Josselin Cuvée des Jean Champagne NV
The bouquet is softly scented with vanilla and lemon cream and the initially crisp, steely, effervescent taste becomes rich and nutty with savoury yeast autolysis characters emerging from the depths. It's quite full bodied and the lingering complex mouthfeel evokes subtle suggestions of peach. Cuisine Best Buy. 12% alc. Cork. First Glass Price: $49.99.
Beaumet Cuvée Brut Champagne NV – Epernay, France
The alluring bouquet has a brioche / apple tart scent and it’s crisp in the yeasty, savoury palate with the depth and complexity Champagne should have. The creamy mouthfeel has a baked apple sweetness, touches of rose hip and a lingering malty richness with a persistent tingle from the fizz. Elegant. Stylish. Cuisine No. 1. 12% alc. Cork. First Glass Price: $44.99.
Louis Roederer Brut Premier Champagne NV – Reims, France
Attractive, lightly floral, lightly malty, lightly yeasty aroma and a tingly taste that has a suggestion of salinity. It's yeasty and nutty with a hint of blackcurrant and the lovely full, rich, toasty finish lingers with hints of caramelised apple. Gold NZIWS. 12% alc. Cork. First Glass Price: $67.99.
Kahurangi Estate Mt Arthur Reserve Nelson Chardonnay 2017 
Light yellow gold with a peach bubblegum aroma that leads into a decadently rich, toasty palate that is satisfyingly creamy and rounded. Full of tropical and stone fruit with a sliver of lime and lingering malt and burnt caramel, it is silky smooth in its flow. 13.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $21.99.
Villa Maria Reserve Marlborough Chardonnay 2016
Golden coloured with buttered sizzled peach and caramel corn aromas that follow through to the seamless flowing, mouthfilling palate that’s fattening out beautifully with bottle age but underpinned nicely by refreshing acidity, nutty oak and touches of gunflint. Champion Chardonnay and Champion Wine NZIWS 2017. Gold NZIWS 2018. 13.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $30.99.
Wrights Reserve Organic Gisborne Chardonnay 2016 
Light golden in hue with a bouquet suggesting canned peaches and apricot with a touch of passionfruit. In the mouth this is savoury and toasty with a lemon cream richness, a mealy complexity and youthful bubblegum oak, becoming more and more oaky as the flavour evolve – and the lingering aftertaste is juicy and creamy with a touch of spearmint emerging. 14.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $33.99.
Charles Wiffen Marlborough Chardonnay 2016
Light gold in colour with subtle nuances of butter and peach infusing the toasty oak scent and bright fresh tropical fruit accented with grilled pineapple filling the palate with layers of buttery oak, malt, caramel and peach. Well balanced acidity offsets the creamy richness and there’s a lovely roundness to the mouthfilling finish. 13.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $19.99.
Esk Valley Winemakers Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawkes Bay Syrah 2014
A lustrous, deep, rich, plummy red in the glass with blackberry pie aromas infused with hints of tar and leather. Firm tannins are noticeable upfront in the rich, dense palate but soon succumb to the wonderful depth of fruit sweetness. Crammed with cherry, mocha, chocolate and savoury oak with a light smattering of rose pepper and finishing full-bodied and creamy with richness and complexity, this is a stunning example of NZ Syrah. Gold & Trophy NZIWS 2018, Gold NZ Wine of the Year 2018. 14.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $49.99.
Barossa Linke Barossa Shiraz 2016 – South Australia
This is a rich deep dark red with a cranberry hue to the edges. Classically spicy on the nose with a creamy chocolate aura and a little more of the same in the plush, velvety palate. It’s big, ripe, juicy and heady with raspberries, mulberries, chocolate-coated raisins, scorched almonds, tingles of pepper, and a deliciously satisfying, long, smooth, creamy finish. 15.7% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $19.99.
Sons of Eden 'Kennedy' Barossa GSM 2016 – South Australia 
Dark crimson red with a little translucency to the edges. The bouquet smells smooth and creamy with scents of chocolate and cherry. A youthful wine hinting of plenty to offer as it unfolds with bitey acidity and tingles of pepper underpinning red and black fruit, and while the tannins are still a little firm the class of this wine shines through as it opens up nicely on the finish where it reveals juicy blackberry and menthol tobacco. A blend of 53% Grenache, 31% Shiraz and 16% Mourvedre from multiple sites in the Barossa Valley. 14.5% alc. Cork/Screwcap. First Glass Price: $28.99.
Brown Brothers Patricia Shiraz 2013 – Victoria, Australia
This is a lovely rich dark red in the glass. The bouquet is dark and savoury with a berry fruit brightness and a gentle seductiveness. Concentrated in the full-bodied palate with touches of graphite, cigar box, cake spices, juicy mulberries and cherries, vanillin oak and cherry chocolate. A rewarding wine that five years on from vintage is smooth and velvety with beautifully resolved, svelte-textured tannins and impeccable flow. 14.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $49.99.
Riverby Noble Marlborough Riesling 2015
There’s a copper sheen to the deep golden hue. The concentrated bouquet has a heady fragrance of flower nectar, honey, beeswax and orange liqueur macerated white raisins. All this and more in the lightly viscous palate where the hedonistic and finely textured honeyed sweetness is exquisitely balanced by delicious orange marmalade acidity. Multiple golds. Trophy NZIWS 2017. 5 stars Cuisine 2018. 11% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $25.99. 375ml.


Easter Show Trophies, Gold Medals and more

First Glass 14 March 2018 
Easter Show Trophies, Gold Medals and more
Notes by Sue Courtney
Wines were tasted blind

Te Hana Sparkling Reserve Cuvée NV
This methode traditionelle made from a blend of chardonnay and pinot noir is yellow gold in the glass with fine bubbles and a lacy froth when poured. It evokes bacquette aromas and hints of marmite to the flavour that suggest a little bottle age. The upfront tingly effervescence subsides to reveal vibrant acidity,  malt and nut bread nuances and a dry, toasty, lingering finish. Outstanding value. Gold Easter Show. 12% alc. Cork. First Glass Price: $13.99.
Whitehaven Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2017
Emanating youthfulness with its glossy pale straw hue and with its bright breezy scent full of greengage plum, grapefruit and bright summer herbs that recur in the crisp, dry flinty palate where juicy pineapple, red capsicum, celery and fleshy peach add to the quintessentially pungent and delightful sauvignon blanc taste. Trophy Easter Show 13% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $19.99.
Whitehaven Marlborough Chardonnay 2016
The colour is lustrous lemon gold, the tantalising bouquet conjures up toasty oak, gunsmoke, malt, nectarine and peach with some reductiveness noticeable and the taste is bold, toasty and mouthfilling with lashings of peaches and cream and a long rich savoury oak finish with lingering wheatmeal and woodsmoke. Gold Easter Show 13.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $19.99.
Villa Maria Reserve Marlborough Chardonnay 2016
This light gold hued wine has a gentle bouquet with wild yeast, barrel ferment, malo, melon and gunflint scents and the taste shows lovely creaminess and restraint with melon, white peach, hazelnut and fig and a long, dry, mealy finish. Subtle, seamless and absolute class. Gold Easter Show, Gold AirNZ. Trophy NZIWS. 13.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $32.99.
Summerhouse Marlborough Verdelho 2016
This barrel-fermented wine is straw gold in hue with a bouquet of gunsmoke and nuances of pear, guava, peach and nectarine – the fruit more obvious in the palate. It's dry, flinty and focussed with a refreshing acid backbone, touches of salinity, hints of manuka woodsmoke and the fruit opening up the wine for a fleshy finish. Trophy Easter Show. 14% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $17.99.
Spy Valley Marlborough Gewurztraminer 2016
Light gold hued with a heady fragrance of violets, lychee, Turkish Delight and rose oil and off dry to the tingly taste with sweet ripe grape and lychee flavours, white pepper and musky spices with a powerful, toasty, smoker lolly finish that’s soft and seamless. Begs to be accompanied with Thai or and Indian curry. Trophy Easter Show. 14% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $19.99.
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumatao Auckland Gewurztraminer 2017
Straw gold in hue with a delicate yet fragrant perfume of lilac and strudel spices with hints of musk and vanilla poached pear. Bright and spicy to the fairly dry taste with delicate tropical fruit and mandarin and just a smidgen of honey that enhances the texture. A subtle Alsace-like style that’s not too OTT. Gold Easter Show. 13% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $22.99.
Akarua Central Otago Pinot Noir 2016
This Bannockburn pinot is a rich dark ruby hue with a beguiling smoky savoury aroma infused with black cherry, vanilla and tar and its seamless in the palate that’s ripe, fruity, flavoursome and intense. Full of musky, spicy, cherry and plum fruit with hints of briar rose, pillowy tannins and subtle smoky oak with underlying acidity that will see it evolve over many years. Gold Easter Show, Gold AirNZ, Gold NZIWS. 14% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $34.99.
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Hawkes Bay Merlot Cabernet 2016
Intense crimson-edged blackberry hue with an attractive bouquet of savoury oak, pencil box, blackcurrant and woody herbs that carry through to the palate where there is refreshing brightness of mint infusing the earthy savoury undertones and the succulent plum and blackberry fruit. The tannins are velvety and firm and there are hints of cigar box on the finish where the purity of the fruit and the savouriness of the oak linger harmoniously. Gold Easter Show. 13% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $14.99.
Mills Reef Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawkes Bay Cabernet Merlot 2016
Deep blackberry red in the glass with the bouquet revealing leathery notes overlaying plum, chocolate and spicy cedar and more leathery, earthy, savoury tones in the soft rounded silky palate that’s brimming with plums and bramble berry fruit with underlying acidity and touches of chocolate and vanilla on the long, smooth finish. Trophy Easter Show. 13% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $22.99.
Riverby Estate Noble Marlborough Riesling 2015
Light yellow bronze in the glass – almost amber. The bouquet is all honey, botrytis, toffee, candied citrus and candied peach and the taste is a mouthful of sweet deliciousness. The lightly viscous nectar is seamless in its flow leaving memories of dried apricots, liquid honey, orange toffee and peach with refreshing acidity honing in the sweetness. A magnificent finish to a dinner party – or any evening when you want to enjoy beautiful wines. Trophy Easter Show. 11% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $24.99. 375ml.
Delgado Zuleta Pedro Ximinez Monteagudo NV - Jerez, Spain
Dark mahogany in the glass with yellow green edges. The heady scent and unctous flavours are like muscatels and sticky dates macerating for the Xmas cake with a hint of salinity that comes from the old barrels the win has age in. It’s seamless, viscous, heady and intense with absolutely amazing length. Hard to resist but a little goes a very long way. 17.5% alc. Cork. First Glass Price: $31.99. 375ml.