Unusually lush, even for this vintage, it starts with pronounced aromas of limes and lemons, fresh green apples, and juniper berries, and turns luscious in the mouth. Partial barrel fermentation and lees aging create a creamy, smoky mouthfeel, while the fruity flavors are volcanic. But it’s dry and elegant. Virtually flawness Sauvignon Blanc.
More restrained on the nose than the regular Chardonnay, but with greater depth, richness and texture, the 2005 Casarina Reserve Chardonnay is a selection of older vines, mainly the Mendoza clone. Subtle popcorn and cereal-grain notes add elegance to the melon fruit, finishing with crisp acids that balance the wine’s weight.
Voluminous yet silky, this undeniably complex offering from Te Kairanga features hints of smoky bacon, black tea and briary herbs surrounding a core of black cherries and plums. The fine texture stands out on the long, slightly warm finish.
This wine appears to be at its peak, showing some developed notes of kerosene to go with apple and citrus flavors. It’s medium-bodied (12% abv) and just barely off dry (7.8 g/l). Enticing notes of Earl Grey grace the nose, while the finish is long, crisp and refreshing.
Te Kairanga continues to refine its Pinot Noir program, now making this Runholder bottling as a midrange offering. It’s a nice wine for early consumption, combining soft tannins with floral (violet) scents and black cherry and plum flavors. Finishes with dried spice notes.
TK’s top Pinot is impressively dark, a result of the season’s low yields. The alcohol is only 12.6%, giving it a rather Burgundian feel, while the flavors run toward dried spices, mushroom and plum, with youthful tannins and crisp acidity. Cellar through 2008.
Martinborough’s trademark savoriness comes through in this wine as hints of soy and mushroom, layered over cherry fruit and chocolaty oak. This medium-bodied Pinot Noir is a bit tight and crisp right now, but it should be fully open and ready for business by mid-2011 and drink well for another 5–6 years after that.
A super value in Pinot Noir, just so long as you don’t expect a bright, berry-scented wine. This is a dark, mysteriously earthy and herbal Pinot, with savory, spicy elements backed by dark fruit and a long, dusty finish. Drink it now and over the next few years.