Posts Tagged ‘New Zealand’

I’m not a huge lover of Sauvginon Blanc but was so astonished by the Spy Valley 2009 that I reviewed a little while ago, trying a vintage from a neighboring winery seemed like a good idea.  I love New Zealand wine and will choose one over most other countries’ vinos. We all know that meso-climate varies greatly by even a few hundred feet; so 16miles inland from Hawkesbury along the floor of the Wairau Valley lies Wither Hills.

The nose of this Wairau Valley Pinot Gris is lusciously floral, honey and nectarines.  The body seems very full with its 12% alc/vol producing thick and long legging within the glass.  The palate is feels very rich and sweet-tasting with the nectarine foremost on the tongue.  Not quite sure I am all that appreciative of the density; the almost oily quality leaves a semi-dry smackiness on the roof of the mouth.

I sampled this vino all by itself on June 18th 2011, sitting on my balcony in the afternoon sun watching cars and motorcycles whizzing by.  Refreshing in this context, I’m not sure what foods other than spicy Asian would do it justice.  Very much like a Gewurztraminer in this aspect.

I’m sort of on the fence about its recommendation which surprises me – given my love of NZ…   Try it for yourself at the LCBO/Vintages ~$20/btl




**image credit – The Winery.  thevinoboy makes no claims to ownership and republishes under Fair Use provisions for for review and critique.

On a recent hunting expedition with a fellow vino enthusiast at my favorite LCBO, shopping list in hand; this new release from the Marlborough region of New Zealand was totally in my sights!  You all know I adore New Zealand wine, I was very eager to uncor…er…un-screw the cap.

Of the viticultural regions of New Zealand, Marlborough is probably the most well-known.  Some areas are mass-production whereas most are still using basic yet modern production techniques to best capture the terroir and varietal characteristics.

A nose of pure passion fruit that carries through the palate to a juicy finish, a hint of mineral and a bounce of spritzy excitement, not at all what I was expecting from a NZ Sauv Blanc.

At first, I felt the ker-pow of sweetness was a definite drawback, but the balance of acidity and slightly herbal note made for a gorgeous sipper to finish and cool our palates after a savory dinner of Indian Chicken Tikka Masala.

This will be the best Summer patio wine for 2011 – I guarantee!  Drink now through 2013 for ~$16/blt




**images credit – the winery – republished under fair use provision for review and critique.

Here I go again! A splurge on which I’d not normally indulge – a moderately-priced wine purely based on viticultural region.  I simply adore New Zealand wines but have only tasted those produced from the northern region.  This vino is from the southern latitudes just outside the city of Christchurch.

On a non-vino note that I feel is very important to mention, there is a philanthropic program behind the sale of Flying Kiwi’s wines.  The adorable and seriously endangered Kiwi is a flightless bird native to, and found nowhere else on the planet outside of, New Zealand. One percent of the sale of all the winery’s wines is donated to the Kiwi Recovery and Breeding program & New Zealand Conservation Trust. Please visit their site and donate if you can – your vinoboy has made a pledge.

A rich ruby colored vino with a vibrant fruity nose of cherry & plum.  The palate is youthfully complex bearing a light oaked elegance that will only become more structured and calm as it is cellared.  The finish is lingering and young displaying a surprising maturity.

A remarkable Pinot Noir. You can bet I’ll be hiding a bottle in the cellar to see what happens in 10 years.

Excellent wine for pan-seared tenderloin with grilled asparagus as that’s what I had for dinner with this wonderful vino.  (LCBO ~$16/btl)




**image credit #1 – the bottle portrait was taken by yours truly after I had polished off the bottle. Design and all that property of the winery, duh!  Published here under fair use provisions for review and critique.

**image credit #2 – the wee Kiwi bird

From the same winery that produces my reviewed “Cat’s Pee on a Gooseberry Bush” comes a barrel-aged Chardonnay that ranks up there on this vinoboy’s palate as a ‘preferred’ vino.  At ~$20/btl, it’ll not be a regular occupant of my wine chest.

I almost passed this bottle by when I noted the  screw cap.  Before you waggle your finger at me on the issue, I most certainly do recall the blog post on the matter.  I’m tolerant of the screw cap just not 100% accepting on the matter when trying a wine for the very first time. Hypocritical of me, yes, a little bit but old notions are difficult to overcome.

Popping the co…er… unceremoniously torquing off the cap and pouring into the glass the pale gold vino seemed almost thick. The aroma is of sweet citrus with hints of ginger and spice.  A full-bodied mouth feel is lush and smooth – hazelnut dominates with a that charge of dryness to make the subtle oak flavors become almost profound.

Technically a ‘New World” Chardonnay, its big and rich with weight, a beautiful texture and lengthy substantial finish.

I like this a lot!  I sipped all alone but its characteristics this vino will marry perfectly with rich herbal dishes like breaded&pan-roasted chicken, cheese-stuffed baked potato or even crusted pork loin! Mmmm!!!  I know what I’m having for dinner!




**image credit – Google Image Search.  As of this review’s publishing date, the winery’s website is ‘under construction’.  Image used under fair use provisions for review and critique.

Recently, I had attended a wine party with a horizontal/vertical Sauvignon Blanc theme. (Horizontal? Vertical? What does that mean?! Find out in the next installment of my series entitled “Grape Gatherings”!!)  Our assignment was to find Sauvignon Blancs from strange places around the world bearing strange name; regardless of the vintage.  While the name of my vino may be little distasteful for some and roflmao to others, it is hardly an accurate description of this New Zealand offering…

Orange blossom and lemon candy present themselves nicely on the nose followed by a faint hint of diesel. Don’t be put off by the whiff of petrol though, it gives a remarkable structure to the body and carries through to the finish of this off-dry vino. The mouth-feel is light with a fine twinge of spritzich to play with the dry, crisp flavors of lemonade and freshly scythed straw.

On the more-than-ample buffet table, our host had prepared a Linguine with Grilled Shrimp. This turned out to be a perfect pairing to my Cat’s Pee.  The al dente pasta was tossed in melted butter, rosemary-infused olive oil and grilled shrimp. The zing of the rosemary heightened the herbaceous quality of the vino.  My favorite dish at the party and I got to take home the leftovers!

Cooper’s Creek Vineyard’s “Cat’s Pee on a Gooseberry Bush” Sauvignon Blanc 2008 from New Zealand!  $13.00/btl @ LCBO




**image credit – Me! I took the picture with my own HP R818. You can see the flash on the shoulder of the bottle. Image was edited to remove background and resize for web posting.  Likeness and product © the winery, naturally. ~tvb