Tasted Wines

Matua Wairarapa Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: July 2003
Dave Cull put me onto this wee beauty, showing you don't have to pay $40+. Grown in the Petrie vineyard, just south of Masterton, this is a very powerful wine with yummy cherry/plum fruit flavours and a lovely touch of forest floor.

Maxwell 4 Roads Shiraz 2000
Tasted: November 2002
A lovely big, robust wine from one of my favorite areas in Australia, the McLaren Vale. Packed with spice and a hint of chocolate. Great with lamb racks.

Maxwell Cabernet Merlot 1998
Tasted: May 2000
If you have enjoyed Maxwell's Lime Cave Cabernet, you shouldn't overlook the Cab Merlot. With a 25% merlot component, it is typically vibrantly dark purple in colour, more in the red berry and plum spectrum, with a brambly. Wild herb note on the palate. The lick of tannin suggests cellaring potential, but all that fruit gives it good drinkablity now. (Mark)

Maxwell Ellen Street 1999
Tasted: August 2002
Rated highly by Robert Parker who describes this gorgeous McLaren Vale Shiraz as a thermonuclear fruit bomb! Packed with spice and plums, most of Maxwell's production is now exported to the USA, where it sells for US$ 35. Fabulous stuff!

Maxwell Ellen Street Shiraz 1998
Tasted: August 2000
Rated 94 by Parker, I prefer this to many $60 Shiraz's. Rich plum and licorice with spice and raspberries. The palate is rich and juicy sweet pepper and spice flavours augment the long sweet palate. The wine is unfiltered and has been matured in American oak hogsheads it's great now, but will improve and get even better over the next couple of years. Winemaker, Mark Maxwell considers this could by the wine of the decade from Maxwell's.

Maxwell Ellen Street Shiraz 1999
Tasted: Christmas 2002
With Robert Parker's rave reviews, this wine will soon be as expensive as Eileen Hardy! Still; a bit left, absolutely beautiful now, but will cellar for 5-7 years. A thermonuclear fruit bomb!

Maxwell Ellen Street Shiraz 1999
Tasted: July/August 2001
Like everything Maxwell's make, the Ellen Street has come in for rave reviews overseas. Robert Parker writes. "A dense fat thermonuclear Shiraz fruit bomb. Opaque purple with aromas and flavours of black fruits mixed with earth, truffles, chocolate and a hint of coffee. This is magic wine, can be drunk now or cellar for 10-15 years. US$30, a bargain." I think he likes it and with Maxwell wines selling so well in the States (thanks to Mr Parker), it makes for excellent buying in NZ dollars. You can rely on Maxwell wines. This wine is on the water as we write, and hopefully will be in-store by the end of the week.

Maxwell Four Roads 2000
Tasted: February 2002
The younger sibling of the wonderful Ellen Street Shiraz. It can hold its head high with wines costing $30 and more. It has a complex bouquet, with liquorice and vanilla aromas. The palate is luscious with a long ripe jammy spicy finish. It is lovely drinking now, but will definitely look good in a couple of years. Certainly worth a place in your cellar.

Maxwell Four Roads Shiraz 2000
Tasted: May 2001
The USA can not get enough Maxwell wines after Robert Parker (aka wine-guru) raved about them last year. If you've tried the Lime Cave you'll know why it was awarded 96/100. Try this while you can. Big, concentrated wine full of powerful fruit and a long finish. 15% grenache makes it very drinkable now, but will cellar. PS Lime Cave stocks are low (also gets 5 stars in next Cuisine).

Maxwell Lime Cave Cab Sauvignon 1997
Tasted: Christmas 1999
Rated 921 by Robert Parker, this is choker full of blackcurrant and spice flavours. Superb. Limited quantities.

Maxwell Lime Cave Cabernet 2000
Tasted: July 2003
We've discussed this wine before but I thought it was time to have another look. A very powerfully flavoured McLaren Vale cab, with an intense yet soft finish and beautifully rounded style. It drinks very well now but it also can be cellared for a further exploration of the flavours. If you have a 'cave' to hide this wine in then it's a perfect place for a while, since the wine is named after a big limestone cave below where the cabernet grapes are grown.

Maxwell Lime Cave Cabernet Sauvignon '99
Tasted: July/August 2001
Sad news, the last of the '99 Lime Cave. Parker writes "Explosive bouquet of blackcurrants, blackberries and smoke. Full bodied, with generous density, sweet concentrated fruit and impeccable balance (93+)." Sells for US$32. The Lime Cave was awarded 5 stars in the current Cuisine mag (as did the Dennis Shiraz), and since then, we have been overwhelmed with orders from throughout the country. We are offering Decanter Club members the last opportunity to buy this wine before stocks dry up. There is absolutely no chance of getting any more of this vintage.

Maxwell Lime Cave Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
Tasted: June 2000
No question as to what my wine of the month is. Fantastic new vintage. Rich and ripe with incredible length and power. Because this wine was rated so highly by Robert Parker Jr (94 to 96), most of the wine was sold to the American market where it sells for about $US50.00 so there is not a lot of this wine available in New Zealand. Cellar for up to 10 years.

Maxwell Lime Cave Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Tasted: April 2001
Yes it's back in, (as are other Maxwell new vintage wines) and for those who love and adore this wine, be in quick as there isn't a lot of it.

Maxwell Reserve Merlot 1997
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Full of spiced plums and cassis. Voted Australia's best Merlot.

McCashins Hawkes Bay Merlot '00
Tasted: November 2001
McGashins from Nelson have a long track record for their range of Macs Ales and Beers. More recently they have moved strongly into wine, sourcing grapes both from Nelson and further afield. Their new Merlot is a vibrant little number showing lovely ripe merlot fruit and enhaced by fine grained tannin. An elegant wee number, and a great food wine.

McGuigan Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Tasted: Christmas 1999
Gold Top 100 wine show. Big ripe and rich. Great for bbq's or a serious leg of lamb.

Merlot Toscana 'Castelgiocondo' Lamaoine 1997
Tasted: June 2001
This wine has been touted as the best Merlot ever to come out of Tuscany. "Unbelievable. A monster Merlot. Dark, with stunning of exotic spice, ripe berry and vanilla. Full-bodied and very concentrated, with masses of ripe fruit and tannin." 96:100 Wine Spectator Magazine.

Metala Original Plantings Shiraz 1998
Tasted: October 2001
A famous old name with considerable pedigree. Langhorne Creek plantings give wine rich in blackberry, spice and earthy/tarry note aligned with sophisticated oak treatment. The fine-grained tannins and layers of complexity would suggest serious long term cellaring.

Mildara Chardonnay 1998
Tasted: February 2000
A great quaffer. Full, rich and ripe fruit. Why buy a cask when you get quality like this from a bottle at this price.

Mildara Chardonnay 1999
Tasted: June 2000
It is getting harder to get good chardonnay at a good price. This is a great buy. Very fresh and lively with a touch of oak.

Mildara Chardonnay
Tasted: May 2000
For those who like less oak in their chardonnays. Great buy.

Mildara Shiraz 1998
Tasted: June 2000
Excellent spicy Australian shiraz. We've bought this in bulk at a great price. Fantastic drinking now but will cellar for a few years. Delicious

Mildara Shiraz 1999
Tasted: June 2003
Excellent value for money Shiraz with lots of ripe berry fruit which is soft and well balanced. Made in an easy drinking style this would be a great red to go with a beef stew on those cold winter evenings.

Mills Reef Reserve Chardonnay 1999
Tasted: May 2001
This Hawkes Bay label was also one of the Cuisine Top 10 picks, and gets my nod of approval on account of its price. Stylishly put together, with peach and tropical fruit nuances and a creamy texture, this wine gained good support from around the room at the Cuisine tasting last month.

Mills Reef Riesling 2001
Tasted: October 2001
Crisp, fresh and zesty; great summer drinking though will certainly age well. It's no secret that Riesling is one of my favorite wine styles and this wine is a good example. The sleek acidity and the citrus nose married to a touch of honey, creates a beautifully balanced wine: at home on its own or with food.

Millton Bunch Selectn Gewurzt '02
Tasted: July 2003
Traditionally the best NZ Gewurz's have come from the Gisborne area. This is a classic Gisborne mouthfilling wine with rich, lush rose-petal characteristics and heaps of ginger and spice. Of course we can't not mention the fact that Millton Vineyards is certified organic.

Millton Bunch Selectn Riesling '02
Tasted: July 2003
If you loved the Opou Riesling you'll go mad about this. The Opou was always considered a benchmark Riesling in New Zealand and the Bunch Selection is yet another step up. Worth the price

Millton Vineyard Gisborne Chard '02
Tasted: April 2003
This Gisborne chardonnay makes a welcome return. Made in a very easy to drink style, showing plenty of ripe tropical fruit flavours with the merest hint of oak, and a touch of sweetness on the finish. Being organic adds to the appeal.

Mission Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: April 2001
Gold medal at an affordable price! Full flavored Chard softened with malolactic fermentation giving a creamy peachy finish.

Mission Hawkes Bay Chardonnay '00
Tasted: May 2001
Gold medal at this years Easter Show. Fruit driven style with citrus and peach flavours.

Mitchell Growers Grenache 1997
Tasted: February 2000
A Clare Valley wine with loads of fruit on the nose, a firm dry tannic finish and with good use of French oak. Probably the heaviest of the wines in this selection making it a good food wine.

Mitchell Growers Grenache 1998
Tasted: May 2001
A favourite of Lyn's! Concentrated spicy raspberry fruit with some interesting Rhone-like complexity. Hard pruning has resulted in low yielding vines resulting in incredibly intense flavours.

Mitchell Pepper Shiraz 1998
Tasted: May 2000
The best yet from this Clare Valley vineyard in South Australia. Beautiful balance, lovely spice and a very long finish, while still being soft and supple.

Mitchelton Preece Cabernet 1998
Tasted: May 2000
Ideal conditions ensured a smooth textured wine with lovely blackcurrant flavours enhanced by barrel maturation and fine gentle tannins.

Moculta Cabernet Merlot 1997
Tasted: February 2000
Wait for it; yes it is another of Lyn's favorites. If you ask Lyn to mix a case for you, you are bound to get a bottle of this wee beauty. Fantastic value.

Moculta Cabernet Merlot 1997
Tasted: June 2000
Be in quick before the vintage changes. Soft rounded flavours of sweet berries with plummy richness in a charming style. Excellent value.

Moculta Cabernet Merlot 1998
Tasted: July/August 2001
All our very many Moculta fans will be delighted to see the new vintage of the Cab Merlot in stock. Bright, lifted berryfruit notes with the Merlot pluminess. Lovely drinking for the cold winter evenings.

Moculta Cabernet Merlot and Moculta Shiraz 2000
Tasted: April 2002
I don't need to tell our regulars anything about the Moculta range; they have been firm favorites at Munslow's over several vintages for their opulent fruit and depth of flavour. Our friendly suppliers have managed to peg back the price a little for us this month (I can see their Christchurch Sales Manager fretting about budgets). Normally $17.95 in the shop, this month only $15.25 to our newsletter customers!

Moculta Shiraz 1997
Tasted: Christmas 1999
This wine has a huge following amongst Munslow's clients, and for us it is a standard quaffer at home. Excellent value.

Moculta Shiraz 1997
Tasted: November 1999
Still a little left of one of Lyn's favourite Barossa shiraz. Rich fruit with soft full flavours of spice and opulent berryfruit. Delicious wine. Made by Barossa Valley Estates which is one of the few wine co-operatives left in Australia. Always good.

Moculta Shiraz 1998
Tasted: August 2000
It's not always true that everything goes up in price these days. Moculta Shiraz is testament to this going down a dollar. Powerful wine with superb mulberry spice and peppery flavours. Smooth well integrated vanilla oak with a soft velvety finish.

Moculta Shiraz 1999
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Bigger than Texas, huge fruit and spice. Great buying. Another wine at a reduced price.

Moculta Shiraz 2000
Tasted: Christmas 2001
A perpetual Munslow's favourite. Big, ripe and cuddly (just like Peter), generously flavoured. Classic Barossa Shiraz.

Moculta Shiraz 2000
Tasted: November 2001
We have built up a loyal following for this wine over the last few years, and the new vintage is finally in store. There is very little of it available on the NZ market this year, so we will be lucky if we can carry stocks beyond Xmas. Typically bright and bold, as we have come to know and love it, and this year in its youth with a smoky element on the nose. Lots of flavour, and a perennial favourite

Montana Reserve Barrique Matured Pinot Noir 1997
Tasted: November 1999
This is a fantastic Pinot. It's got good depth of colour, savoury mushroom characteristics on the nose. On the palate it is a big, generous wine with concentrated complex and spicy flavours with rich sweet cherryish fruit, smoky oak and balanced tannins. Munslow's snaffled this out of an overseas shipment. Very limited stock.

Montesodi 1995
Tasted: June 2001
Also grown on the Nippozano estate, this is Frescobaldi's ultra premium Chianti.

Montrose Black Pepper Shiraz 1998
Tasted: August/September 2001
This is a truly tasty wine. Big, bold and brooding with heaps of spice packed with fruit and all those things that we love about Aussi Shiraz.

Montrose Poet's Corner 1999
Tasted: May 2001
This is an outstanding value for money wine. Montrose is a New South Wales based winery that fashion this wine from a blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc as they have done for many years. Fragrant with a generous dollop of fruit, and a grip on the finish, this wine certainly out-performs its price point. Kind on the wallet and tasty on the palate.

Montrose Poets Corner 98 Shrz/Cab/Cab Franc
Tasted: October 2000
A soft super smooth quaffer to open and enjoy.

Montrose Poets Corner Shiraz Cab.
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Lovely soft Aussi red packed with berryfruit.

Moris Farms Morellino Di Scabsano'99
Tasted: February 2001
One of the new wave of Tuscan wines, this is from the Maremma area near the coast which is undergoing a revival. This Sangiovese based wine has much in common with the top Chianti's given its savoury morello cherry palate, but has an extra lift of acidity on the finish. Crying out for a good Italian meal to accompany it.

Morris Durif 1998
Tasted: April 2002
We've picked up another shipment of this stunning wine, and are able to ratchet the price down a little more. This is a big, ballsy b*!? Of a wine, which I have previously likened to hand to hand combat in a glass, though while it has a big tannin structure, it balances that with intense fruit. I recently read a review by an Australian wine writer who had just sampled a twenty-year-old bottle of this wine, and found it stunning and with life ahead of it. While I cannot promise twenty years for this wine I'm sure it will soak up 10 plus years. Magic stuff.

Morris Durif 1998
Tasted: June 2002
We had a bit of a race on last month to see which would sell first...the Morris Durif or the Browns T Trellis Shiraz. In the end the Morris won (just), but admittedly there was a little less of it to start with. Well, thankfully, we have managed to source a little more for our customers who have developed a taste for it and, we have also to managed to maintain the price structure.

Morris Durif 1998
Tasted: November 2001
Durif thrives in the hot dry climate around Rutherglen in Northern Victoria, creating huge inky, powerful wines not for the fainthearted. This is not so much a bottle of wine as hand to hand combat in a glass. Fresh from the Liqourland Top 100, where it scored a gold, this is a big wine with lots of fruit to balance it. Partner it with a big rare steak. Guaranteed to warm the cockles of your heart.

Morris Liqueur Muscat
Tasted: Christmas 2002
Liquid Christmas Cake. Dangerously drinkable, which is why I don't keep it at home! Try it with the wonderful Christmas Cake ice-cream from Mark Scorgie NB. This is also the secret to Peter's Christmas ham. He adds this to the glazing.

Morris Shiraz
Tasted: February 2004
This was excellent wine at $21.00, but it's a steal at under $15. Full of spice and currants. Buy a case or 2.

Morris Sparkling Durif NV
Tasted: August 2002
The Morris label already has very many converts so I may be preaching to the converted, but talk of mid winter Xmas and mid-winter roasts means that it's time to talk turkey (forgive the pun). Sparkling red ids a wonderful combination with roast duck or turkey, makes a great appetiser, and is corker with the steamed pud (or chocolate for that matter). Stuff the food and wine matching, a bottle of the Morris for each course, thank you very much.

Morris Sparkling Shiraz Durif NV
Tasted: Christmas 2002
This dark purply red; thick luscious spicy fruit; add bubbles! Yum! A totally addictive wine. More youthful; fruit than the Seppelts, and showing vanillin oak characters as well. Just as delicious, yet deliciously different. Another star turn with the duck or turkey and yet also fabulous with a chocolatey dessert.

Morris Sparkling Shiraz Durif
Tasted: April 2002
Let it be known here and now that I am a big fan of Aussie sparkling reds, though I have sadly watched as fame and demand have pushed prices up and up. I'm well chuffed that the folks who bring in the Morris range from Victoria have now added this to their portfolio. Pete and Laurie bought me back a bottle from Melbourne last year and I was mighty impressed. This is fragrantly perfumed, powerfully flavoured, not overly sweet and with good backbone. Simply this is a serious red sparkler at a bargain price (it's more expensive in Oz too). Red bubbles fan, believe me...you must try this.

Morris Sparkling Shiraz Durif
Tasted: February 2004
One of my favourites, ripe blackberry flavours ands a lovely ripe palate, balanced by good tannins. Great with yum characteristics!

Mount Edward Pinot Noir 2002
Tasted: July 2003
2002 will go down as one of the best from Central Otago so far. Warm, dry conditions and an absence of extremely high temperatures allowed flavours to develop slowly and evenly. Alan Brady aims for elegance fine texture and enduring structure and hits the target with his 2002 vintage. Jancis Robinson had this to say of a barrel sample tasted in March: "Extremely deep crimson. Very, very intense. Broad, complex flavours. Tannins creeping in sweet start and a real dry finish". drinking superbly now, however guaranteed to please after a couple of years.

Mount Horrocks Shiraz 97
Tasted: October 2000
Mount Horrocks is a Clare Valley producer owned by a Kiwi (Stephanie O'Toole: ex of Ashburton), with a growing reputation, and rave reviews by Robert Parker. The wine itself is light years away from the styles found in the Barossa and McLaren Vale wines further south, being more in the mould of the Northern Rhone. With a fragrant bouquet, a savoury palate with layers of complexity, and a wonderful finish that just goes on and on after you've swallowed it, this is one of those wines that combines intensity with elegance.

Mount Horrocks Shiraz 97
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Mount Horrocks is a Clare Valley producer owned by a Kiwi (Stephanie O'Toole: ex of Ashburton), with a growing reputation, and rave reviews by Robert Parker. The wine itself is light years away from the styles found in the Barossa and McLaren Vale wines further south, being more in the mould of the Northern Rhone. With a fragrant bouquet, a savoury palate with layers of complexity, and a wonderful finish that just goes on and on after you've swallowed it, this is one of those wines that combines intensity with elegance.

Mount Maude Pinot Noir 2002
Tasted: October 2003
One of the latest 2002 vintage Central Pinot's to hit our shelves. I thought this Wanaka Pinot was one of the standout wines of last year. The 2002 is carrying on where the 2001 left off and is looking extremely good. Like many of the 2002 vintage releases, it is fairly weighty and dense with heaps of plum and cherry flavours integrated nicely with the French oak influence. Hang on to it for a while if you can.

Mount Riley Sav Blanc 2002
Tasted: Christmas 2002
Mount Riley is one of those deceptive labels. While not seen that widely in this neck of the woods, they are actually a major player in Marlborough, producing large volumes of wine for export. Not a label that should be overlooked, as this is a stylish wine with layers of flavour and notes of mango, capsicum and lime. Lovely crisp drinking.

Mt Difficulty Merlot
Tasted: April 2002
Don't adjust your reading glasses just yet! Yes, Mt. Difficulty is making a Merlot, and jolly good it is too. Gone are the days of green, underripe red wines from NZ (other than Pinot). This really is a stunner. Great plum and berry fruit flavours with. More like the Aussi Merlot's with the level of ripeness they have achieved. Bound to surprise most of you, it certainly did us.

Mt Edward Riesling 2001
Tasted: April 2002
A great wee local wine made by guru Alan Brady in Central Otago. It has an intense lemon blossom perfumed that follows through on the palate. I've no doubt this will develop really well in the bottle if you leave it for a few years. Like all Central Otago wines though, supplies are relatively small, so don't wait until the Indian summer they promised us comes to buy this.

Mt Ida Shiraz 1998
Tasted: August/September 2001
This is the second placed wine in the Decanter tasting, and one which we have loved since first running with it with the '96 vintage. One of our regulars (name suppressed in case his wife finds out) scoffed a whole bottle of this while watching the Bledisloe test. Certainly it combines a sheer drinkablity and balance that makes you reach for a second glass, along with powerful fruit, and that touch of tarry licorice I often get in Victorian Shiraz.

Mt Maude Gewurztraminer 2001
Tasted: August 2002
Mt Maude is a small winery owned by Terry and Dawn Wilson and is situated just over the hill from Wanaka with the wines being made by Dean Shaw of Cowco. This is a striking Central Otago gewurz at the drier end of the spectrum, with intense rose petal and musk notes and hints of turkish delight on a minerally backbone.

Mt Riley Cabernet Merlot 2000
Tasted: June 2001
We've just had "Digger" Hennessy at 'wine club' presenting his Mt Riley range of wines (and jolly good they were too), and for me this was the surprise package. A combination of fruit from both Auckland (Auckland had a fantastic 2000 vintage) and Marlborough creating a remarkably lush, supple wine without that NZ green character. Very good value for a Kiwi Cabernet.

Mt. Difficulty 'Mansons Farm' Pinot Gris 2001
Tasted: February 2002
A touch different to the Lake Hayes version (made more in an Alsatian style rather than the Italian pinot Grigio), but just as enjoyable. Rich and unctious with a whisker more sweetness, but still brimming over with that wonderful fruit. Food match: who cares! Just drink by itself and enjoy.

Mt. Difficulty Pinot Noir 1999
Tasted: August 2000
At the recent winter reds tasting, Matt Douglas (manager of Mt Difficulty) gave us an unexpected surprise. We were able to try the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir which have just been released and the not yet been released Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc (all of which were stunning). The Pinot is a big brooding beast, dark in colour, with its black cherry and savory notes providing a foil to the grippy tannins. It needs warming at this time of year though. I think it will cellar well for a few years at least. Watch out for the other Mt Difficulty wines, there is no doubt you will be hearing more about them in the future).

Mt. Difficulty Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: September 2002
Central Otago Pinots have wonderful cherry fruit flavours that are being praised by both the home and the overseas market. This wine is no exception it has excellent cherry fruit, very good palate weight and a long finish.

Mt. Edward Pinot Noir 1999
Tasted: June 2000
Alan Brady set up his Mt. Edward winery after leaving Gibbston Valley, and like the pioneer he is has produced one of the best Pinots from this area. This is Alan's second vintage and has not disappointed. Full of wonderful cherry flavours and in my opinion is every bit as good as some of the other high-flyers at a better price.

Mt. Edward Pinot Noir 2000
Tasted: Christmas 2001
One of the best from Central Otago. Made by Alan Brady the 'godfather' of Central Otago (only joking Alan!). Rich, plum and cherry flavours. It has gold written all over it.

Mt. Edward Pinot Noir 2000
Tasted: June 2001
Another superb Pinot from Alan Brady. Solid gold for my money. Rich, yet delicate with lovely cherry, spice and raspberry flavours. If you liked the '99, you'll love this. Rates above most of the other big names. Limited stock available. Buy now, as most good Central Pinot's are well sort after, there will only be available for such a short time.

Mt. Edward Riesling 1999
Tasted: March 2000
What a superb find we have on our doorsteps with Central Otago cleaning up the shows with Pinot. Well hold your breath, here comes this superb Riesling to follow suit. Although it has yet to reach the same heights as others, I predict that it will achieve as much acclaim as anything else will from the area. Buy when you can, and cellar for several years and you will be justly rewarded with a splendid wine.

Mt. Edward Riesling 2000
Tasted: April 2001
Off-dry Riesling with flavours of baked apple, spice and stonefruit. The best Riesling so far tasted from Central from this current vintage. A truly stunning example of what Central Otago is capable of. Good cellaring potential.

Mt. Edward Riesling 2002
Tasted: November 2002
The best yet from Alan Brady. Very ripe and peachy. Lovely now but will cellar well. One of my favourite Rieslings. Match it with Thai food or enjoy on its own.

Mt. Langi Ghiran Joanna Cabernet Sauvignon 1997
Tasted: November 1999
Blessed with deeply coloured, terra rossa over limestone soils, this extraordinary vineyard has produced a wine of exuberant colour, intensity and richness, The bouquet is an amalgam of earthy tones, spicy oak and abundant blackberry fruits, the palate generous, long and supple. Fantastic wine.

Mt. Maude Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: November 2002
Top shelf Central Otago Pinot sensibly prices compared to other relative newcomers. Just a touch of spicy oak adds complexity to the layers of berry fruit flavours on the palate. Lovely long finish.

Mt. Riley Sauvignon Blanc 2002
Tasted: June 2003
We've done a great deal on this classic Marlborough savvy. It's packed with all those classic gooseberry and capsicum, flavours and has a good finish.

Murdoch James Cabernet Franc 2001
Tasted: April 2003
In 2001 extremely small yields and a long cool ripening season resulted in small quantities of fruit however they have intense flavours, deep colour and natural acid balance. Boysenberries, cassis, mixed spice, leather and liquorice abound on both the nose and palate of this soft yet intensely flavoured wine. Aged in French oak barriques the wine has a firm structure and a wealth of savoury flavours that will unfold with time. Cellaring potential for this wine is up to 8 years.

Murdoch James Syrah 2001
Tasted: April 2003
Truly a unique Martinborough Syrah, a satisfyingly robust style with deep colour and strong white pepper aromas. A complex, vibrantly fruity wine with raspberry/spice and rhubarb leaf flavours. Matured in 100% fine-grained French oak this wine is well balanced with hints of cigar smoke. A complement to game dishes, casseroles, and red meats. Enjoy this wine now, or cellar over the next eight years.

Nautilus Chardonnay 1998
Tasted: August 2000
Matured in French oak and impressively concentrated. A well structures wine with an oaky bouquet and an abundance of ripe citrusy fruit characteristics.

Nautilus Marlborough Chardonnay 1998
Tasted: June 2000
This is a typical mouth-filling Marlborough wine but to add to the usual Chardonnay it has a wonderful spicy oak flavour which adds to the ripe citrus and melon fruit right through to the finish. Fantastic vintage which will ensure longevity.

Newton Forrest Syrah 2001
Tasted: September 2003
John's first vintage of Syrah from his Cornerstone vineyard in Hawkes Bay, and what a beauty! Intensely aromatic, sweetly fruited and juicy on the palate. Very purple in colour with fresh cracked pepper, violets and cedar oak flavours. Delicious drinking now but will cellar well under the screwcap.

Nga Waka Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: March 2004
This small family owned vineyard in Martinborough established back in 1988. They have produced a Pinot Noir that displays all the characteristic qualities of wines from this area, with hints of wild mushroom and gamey, savoury flavours. Classy stuff.

Nippozano Riserva 1996
Tasted: June 2001
The grapes for this wine are grown on the Nippozano Estate in Chianti Rufina, north east of Florence. The wine is given 12 months in small French oak and a further 12 months in large oak casks, and has potential for further ageing.

Nobilo Chardonnay 2002 1 litre
Tasted: June 2003
Lovely zesty citrus wine with just a lick of oak. Great buy for a BIG 1 LITRE.

Nobilo Icon Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: November 2002
This is as good as many of the Central Pinots at twice the price. Sourced from a well-known winery in Otago, full of ripe cherries and a hint of sweet oak.

Nobilo Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2001
Tasted: February 2002
A gold medal last year was just reward for this very well made yet very affordable wine. While some '01 Savvy's are already getting short in supply, this is available in good volumes. Pungent and racy, just what you expect in a good Savvy itching to be enjoyed now.

Nobilo Mendoza Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasted: February 2000
Very Bordeaux style wine from Argentina. Great food wine. Stocks limited, what we have is it. Nobilo is not bringing the fruit into NZ again.

Nobilo Merlot 2002
Tasted: June 2003
Nobilo's has lifted the quality of this wine over the years. The fruit is from Marlborough, and is not green/herbal, which is surprising for the price. It is juicy with rich ripe fruit and aged in American and French oak. Why not try it at this price? Plantaganet Omrah Shiraz 2001 16.15 If like me you're a fan of big spicy Shiraz, then this is for you. Loads of pepper flavours and a palate that oozes fruit. From West Australia.

Nobilo Pinot Noir Chardonnay Brut
Tasted: February 2002
Made entirely from Australian fruit by Nobilo's parent company Hardy's. Shows good complexity with buttery, toasty characters from the Chardonnay and strawberries and cream from the Pinot Noir. Excellent value fizz.

Nobilo Pinot/Chardonnay Brut
Tasted: April 2002
It's great to have a good fizz at a good price. More finesse and fruit weight than many of the Australian wines in this price range.

Nobilo Poverty Bay Chardonnay 99
Tasted: October 2000
Silver Medal at the Top 100 Competition. Concentrated citrus and tropical fruit flavours, with moderate use of oak, makes this a delicious partner for fish, white meats or pasta.

Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc 2001
Tasted: October 2001
On of the value wines in the marketplace each year and unlike many of its competitors, the Nobilo has held its price this vintage. I tried this side by side with Drylands: this has a huge lift of fruit, which gives a perception of sweetness to the wine (though it is dry), which admirably marries with and balances the crisp acid finish.

Novel Malbec Bonarda 2002
Tasted: February 2004
Another wine from Argentina that is new to Munslow's. A blend of Malbec and Bonarda, it has a vibrant nose of mature berry fruit leading to an intensely fruity palate with smoky overtones.

Obsidian Island Red
Tasted: October 2000
If you're a fan of big gutsy Aussie reds, then you needn't read on. Island Red is more in a Bordeux style, subtly flavoured, and with fine grained tannins leading on to a dry finish. From a vintage that Stonyridge believes is the best since 1994, this wine certainly avoids the NZ "herbals", and positively cries out to be drunk with food.

Omni NV Brut
Tasted: March 2000
I've been sharing a number of bottles of Omni with friends over the last months and it never fails me. This wine has got style and at the newsletter price is a steal. Everyone needs at least one of these in the fridge for a spontaneous occasion.

Omni Sparkling
Tasted: Christmas 2002
Best fizz under $15.00. Lovely flavours, very refreshing for Christmas or BBQs. Would be perfect for Bucks Fizz...half fizz and half freshly squeeze orange juice. A perfect breakfast drink!

Omrah Merlot Cabernet 2001
Tasted: March 2004
Many of you will know the Omrah Shiraz-now meet its cousin/nephew/sibling, the Cabernet Merlot. Lots of blackcurrant and blackberry flavours with hints of vanilla. Full flavoured with a moderately long finish. Drinks wonderfully. I hope you all become acquainted because class runs in the family.

Omrah Shiraz 2001
Tasted: March 2004
This Western Australian Shiraz wonderful drinking now, however the current levels of tannin and acidity indicate it will continue to develop with further cellaring. A nose of berry fruit, spices and caramel, and a full, long mouth feel of raspberries and white pepper. A great value shiraz!

Onix 1999
Tasted: May 2001
A label that we have run with very successfully in the past. Onix hails from a co-operative in Priorat, one of the most fashionable regions in Spain today. Priorat is bakingly hot, and this Garnacha dominant wine has an almost burnt character on top of the sweet fruit. Another powerfully flavoured wine.

Orlando Steingarten Riesling 1999
Tasted: October 2001
Long a single vineyard wine, this wine is definitely built for the long haul. Taut and minerally for now, with intense fruit showing some of those limey touches we come to expect from Australia. Put this away for several years and watch it blossom.

Ornellaia 1998
Tasted: August/September 2001
This gorgeous wine has received 96/100 in Wine Spectator ranking it the 9th best wine in the world. This score is the same that was awarded the wine from the 1990 and 1997 vintages, which are two of the greatest vintages from Tuscany in the last two decades

Ornellaia 2000
Tasted: July 2003
You could forgiven if you found this label confusing, and assume that because it is from Tuscany it must be made predominantly from the great Sangiovese grape varietal. Well this is one of the 'classic' Tuscan wines that is not. It is made from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon 65%, Merlot 30% and Cabernet Franc 5%. It is however considered one of the great wines not only from Tuscany but from the whole of Italy, and they make a huge amount of wine. What can be said about this wine isn't worth reading about, and the wine from this vintage is even greater than usual. Jancis Robinson MW rated this as 18.5:20, the same rating as Chateau's Mouton Rothschild and Lafite and above Chateau's Latour (18.25) and Haut Brion (18) all from the same vintage. I might also add these first growth French Bordeaux's listed are valued at approximately three times this price. Robinson writes of this wine, "Very, very ripe, heady, extremely attention- grabbing nose. Glorious opulence. Ink and satin on the palate and definite sweetness. There's lots of fine tannin but the wine has the fruit to carry it" I guess all this begs the question 'what would I do with a wine like this?' Well, firstly I might put it in the cellar for a number of years, or if I was feeling exceedingly generous, I might give it to someone who might appreciate a wine of this quality, or I might open it up with the most fantastic meal (obviously Italian cuisine), or I might put it into a fantastic line-up of wines for a very impressive tasting. Most of all, I'd think of myself as very lucky to have such a rare treasure. This wine is in limited supply and you definitely won't find it in any other winestores in the south.

Oxford Landing Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: August/September 2001
Rich and ripe with nice oak and peach flavours. The Aussi's do this so well. Great value which you can't go past.

Oxford Landing Merlot 2000
Tasted: August/September 2001
Lovely wines with warm plummy flavours and plenty of fruit. Bigger than you would expect. Try it, you'll be surprised. Perfect party wine.

Packspur Pinot Noir 2002
Tasted: February 2004
Another Central gold at a good price. Well structured wine with grip and power, and wonderfully balanced by full rich fruit. Lots of Dawson Black cherry (and we have had heaps over the summer), and savoury herbs and pepper.

Packspur Riesling 2001
Tasted: April 2003
New vintage from this small Central Otago winery. This just gets better with each vintage, with good quality lime and citrus flavours, and the typical Central stonefruit finish.

Pauletts The Quarry Mouvedre 1997
Tasted: March 2000
Traditionally known as Mataro in Australia, but the dictates of fashion see its French heritage dominate. Gamey, spicy and a touch of barnyard, the palate and finish are very dry. Definitely a food wine and more for the eurocentrically minded. (Mark)

Pegasus Bay Chardonnay 2002
Tasted: February 2004
This is one of NZ's top Chardonnay's. Fully barrel fermented, it is very Burgundian in style with crisp, biscuity complex flavours with great concentration and length.

Pegasus Bay Prima Donna Pinot Noir '99
Tasted: November 2001
For fans of this wine (now already sold out from the winery) we have managed to source one case. A big brooding beast of a Pinot with intense colour, and just chock full of fruit. Really one for the cellar as it is only just now getting into stride. If you follow this label DON'T DELAY. For fans of the Pegasus Riesling, this should finally be released at the end of this month.it should be worth wating for.

Pegasus Bay Riesling 1999
Tasted: May 2000
A small winery from north Canterbury that always gets huge press both in New Zealand and abroad. Matt Donaldson, son of Ivan and Chris who set the winery up in the late 80's now makes the wines. Richly fragrant wine with superb intense concentrated flavours of citrus and honey. Complex and luscious. This is one of the stars in the world of Riesling this year. If you haven't tried this wine yet, I would urge you to buy a few now, because the availability is limited.

Pegasus Bay Riesling 2001
Tasted: February 2002
This is a very classy Riesling from Waipara. Richly fragrant and quite intense. Very much a medium style, with concentrated citrus and honey flavours predominating, with a complex and luscious texture. Drinking nicely now, but could be very interesting in 2 or 3 years down the track.

Pegasus Bay Riesling 2002
Tasted: Christmas 2002
The big brother to the Main Divide Riesling, produced only from Estate grown fruit. I had the opportunity to try this out of tank at the winery a couple of months ago, and it is a fine addition to the line. One of NZ's benchmark Rieslings, for all it's power and intensity, it dances lightly on the palate. Certainly approachable now, but with a strong track record it will age beautifully in the cellar for 10 years or so.

Pegasus Bay Riesling 2003
Tasted: March 2004
One of the best! Richly flavoured with concentrated flavours of citrus fruit and honey. Made in a lush medium style. This is lovely to drink on its own.

Peiter Mertes 1998 Niersteiner Gutes Domtal Spatlese
Tasted: August 2000
Great value, a drink-on-its-own style. Medium-drier than the Auslese, with good peach flavours and nice balance. From the Rheinhessen area.

Peiter Mertes Klusserather St. Michael Auslese 1998
Tasted: August 2000
Made in the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer area. Fantastic value with all these beautiful honeyed flavours you expect from a good German Riesling. Medium sweet but not cloying, and with 8% alcohol it makes it a great afternoon wine, or with stonefruit after a meal. Cellar for a few years for that added dimension.

Penfold's Grange 1993
Tasted: February 2001
Selar Henderson has 3 bottles of this superb wine for sale at $250. He assures us they have been well cellared. Contact him directly on 472 8345. Not a bad price considering the auction value these days.

Penfold's RWT 1998
Tasted: October 2001
Bin 389 has been dubbed the 'Poor Man's Grange'; the new Penfold's label (2nd vintage) has been called the 'Baby Grange'. All Barossa fruit and aged in French rather than American oak provides a stylistic departure from the old Penfold's style.

Penfold's Rawson's Retreat 1998
Tasted: March 2000
When the first vintage of the Rawson's Retreat hit the market, I must admit to being decidedly underwhelmed. This vintage I am please to say is a huge turnaround. I don't know how they can cram so much fruit into a bottle for this price.

Penfolds 128 2001
Tasted: March 2004
A definite 5 star wine from one of the best vintages ever. Utterly magic, all you could ask from a Coonawarra shiraz. Profound red, purple colour with ripe chocolate aromas. The palate is of blackberry, raspberry and cherry which makes a fruit cocktail which explodes in the mouth and a palate that goes on and on. It is finely balanced between fruit and complexity. I loved it!

Penfolds 1997 Bin 707
Tasted: Xmas 2000
A classic, very very rich, concentrated and complex wine. Cellar 10-15 years.

Penfolds Kalimna Bin 28 1996
Tasted: February 2000
The 1992 (last vintage tasted and written up) gets 5 stars from James Halliday of which he writes "classic Penfold's style with lots of fruit, lots of oak and good tannins all surrounding an attractive rich and sweet mid palate". The 1996 is considered a better vintage than the '92.

Penfolds Koonunga Hill Shiraz Cabernet 1998
Tasted: May 2000
Once again Penfold's have produced a brilliant value for money wine. Ripe spicy shiraz and rich full bodied blackcurrant and berry fruit.

Penfolds Old Vine 1996
Tasted: February 2000
A blend of the Rhone grape varietals Grenache, Mouvedre and Shiraz, this is a wee beauty. Full- bodied rich, ripe and succulent, The grenache fills out the mid-palate with raspberries and spice.

Penfolds St. Henri Shiraz Cabernet 1995
Tasted: April 2001
Legendary wine classically elegant with great depth and structure that is just starting to open up now. Delicious!

Pepperjack Shiraz 2000
Tasted: June 2003
Another corker from the Barossa, this Shiraz is packed with an abundance of wild berry and plum fruit with plenty of pepper and spice. It has been matured for 18 months in American and French oak providing soft tannins and adding complexity and good length.

Pepperjack Shiraz 2002
Tasted: March 2004
Another big lush Aussi Shiraz. Rich soft with plums and lovely vanilla oak. Try it with a bit of veal (available from Eskrick's Butchery in North East Valley this Monday)

Peregrine Pinot Noir 1999
Tasted: March 2000
A classic vintage for Pinot the wine shows a complex array of ripe black fruits and a gentle dried spices and herbs finishing warm and rich.

Pertaringa Cabernet Sauvignon 98
Tasted: October 2000
I first came upon this label in Adelaide in 96, and had not seen it again until the 98 vintage wines arrived in store. Like so many good McLaren Vale reds, it had the most marvelously silky palate, the fruit has gobbled up the oak, and while it will undoubtedly age well it seems a crime not to drink it now. I just recently picked up the latest James Halliday Wine Companion and found that he had rated this as one of his top cabernet picks.

Pertaringa Shiraz 1998
Tasted: June 2000
The perfect wine to share with your special someone. Enhanced by maturation in American and French oak it has wonderful intense black cherry pepper and spice overtones. Another McLaren Vale beauty!

Pertaringa Shiraz 1998
Tasted: March 2000
Very ripe and generous, a lush, seductive, opulent mouthful of berry, plum and spice flavours that practically tumble over each other before harmonising on the long finish. Drink now through 2010. Wine spectator wrote this review and rates it 92:100. Totally awesome and worth every penny (and more).

Petaluma Coonawarra Cabernet Merlot '99
Tasted: June 2001
Rock and roll! I tried this after it had been open for eight days and it was still fresh, dark and brooding. This is the best vintage according to Halliday and he gave the 1998 97:100. Almost black in colour. Very rich ripe, full of blackcurrants, a great future lies ahead. Very limited. Go on spoil yourself. For me, better than the Bin 707 at half the price. Exclusive to Munslow's in Dunedin.

Peter Lehmann 'Mentor' 1998
Tasted: October 2003
From the outstanding 1998 vintage comes the Mentor. It is a blend of Cabernet, Malbec and Shiraz from some of the Barossa's most prized vineyards. It is matured in French and American oak for 30 months prior to bottling and has produced a powerful wine with good fruit richness and hints of chocolate and vanilla. This wine normally retails for over $50 and there is only a limited amount available at this special price, so be in quick.

Peter Lehmann Barossa Shiraz 2000
Tasted: March 2002
Several of our customers have been inquiring about this wine, and the new vintage has just arrived in store. For me the last couple of releases of this have been much better balanced. The fruit intensity is well married with the oak, and provides a big wine; yes, but it also an elegant one. The second and third glass (and of yes the forth) are a real pleasure to drink.

Peter Lehmann Cabernet Sauvignon '00
Tasted: April 2003
Very typical of the Barossa style. Full of ripe, sweet cabernet fruit, nicely balanced with a good helping of vanilla oak and soft tannins lurking in the background.

Peter Lehmann Grenache 1998
Tasted: February 2000
Deep garnet colour with good depth and quality. Soft and very berryish with spice and plums. Made for early consumption.

Peter Lehmann Grenache 1999
Tasted: May 2000
A bargain not to be overlooked. Every home should have this for an easy drinking quaffer. Earthy raspberry flavours make it an ideal for BBQ, pizza or pasta dishes! (Lyn)

Peter Lehmann Grenache 2000
Tasted: June 2001
The best yet. Fresh and zesty and packed with boysenberry and raspberry flavours. This is a great quaffer with Sunday lunch.

Peter Lehmann Grenache
Tasted: June 2000
Flavoursome sweet, ripe, raspberry, blackberry and black cherries on the palate. Lyn's current house red.

Peter Lehmann Shiraz 1999
Tasted: August/September 2001
The '98 of this wine cleaned up at the International wine challenge in London last year, and now I see that this vintage has topped an Australian Shiraz tasting in Decanter Magazine, gaining a coveted 5 star Decanter Award. While not inexpensive, the Lehmann team still manages to pack an awful lot of ingredient into this wine for the price! It gives an awful lot of $40 plus wines a bit of a hurry up.

Peter Lehmann Shiraz 2001
Tasted: April 2003
It wasn't long ago that this wine was being sold in the supermarkets for under $12, and once it had had gained it's place in the market, they hoisted the price up to more than double within about 3 years. All that did was successfully kill its sales, which was a shame because it was and remains a very good wine. At $19 this wine is very good value. It's a classic Barossa shiraz, with everything you would expect. It is spicy, warm and cuddly with explosive fruit bomb flavours. It's time to go back to Lehmann.

Peter Mehtes Kabinett
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Excellent crisp off-dry German riesling at a great price. Great for lunchtime drinking.

Peter Mertes Riesling Auslese 1999
Tasted: Christmas 2001
Absolutely perfect to go with poached peaches. A delicate, yet robust wine. Great vintage in the Mosel area of Germany.

Peter Mertes St. Michael Kabinett 1999
Tasted: July/August 2001
New in this month, this excellent German white from the Mosel is a real bargain. Lovely rich fruit flavours (apricots and citrus) are backed up with a good level of acidity giving it a thoroughly refreshing feel. At only 7.5% you can drink it until the cows come home!

Pikes Luccio 2000
Tasted: October 2003
Pikes is a Clare Valley (South Australia) company that has been around for years now, and we have enjoyed many of their rustic style reds. This is new to their portfolio and is made from a blend of 70% Sangiovese, 15% Merlot and 15% Cabernet. It's a juicy, plumy, cherry flavoured wine that is designed to match Mediterranean food.

Pirramima Stocks Hill Shiraz 98
Tasted: October 2000
Lifted spice and pepper varietal shiraz flavours enhanced with sweet vanillan oak

Pirramimma 'The Stocks' Shiraz 1999
Tasted: July/August 2001
The Johnstons of Pirramimma (it means "the moon and the stars" in the local Aboriginal dialect, by the way) have been making wine in McLaren Vale for more than a century. This is perhaps a slightly old fashioned wine, honest and generous in its flavours of plum and chocolate, and its nose of vanilla and toasty oak. With its deep colour and full-bodied tannins, cellaring should be a rewarding prospect.

Pirramimma Cabernet Sauvignon 1997
Tasted: November 1999
Gorgeous wine from McLaren Vale. It has the most extraordinary flavours of liquorice and jasmine.

Pisa Range Black Polar Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: Christmas 2002
Pisa range is a new label for us from central Otago. Owned by the Hawkers, their fruit was original going into Quartz Reef; this wine, the '01, is their second vintage under their own label, with the wine being made by Rudi Bauer. We found it to have a lovely richness and depth of fruit with touches of cherry and ribena. The palate is silky in texture with a lovely finish. All in all, a very lovely expression of Central Otago Pinot.

Pisa Range Black Polar Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: November 2002
Pisa range is a new label for us from central Otago. Owned by the Hawkers, their fruit was original going into Quartz Reef; this wine, the '01, is their second vintage under their own label, with the wine being made by Rudi Bauer. We found it to have a lovely richness and depth of fruit with touches of cherry and ribena. The palate is silky in texture with a lovely finish. All in all, a very lovely expression of Central Otago Pinot.

Poets Corner 2001
Tasted: June 2003
One of the best buys in the shop that offers loads of juicy fruit flavours. A blend of cabernet, shiraz and cabernet franc.

Pomino Benefizio 1996
Tasted: June 2001
Grown at the Pomino estate on the slopes of the Tuscan Appenine Mountains, this is Frescobaldi's flagship Chardonnay. For those of you planning 'around the world Chardonnay tastings', here's your chance to add to the mix.

Preece Merlot 2000
Tasted: July 2003
From the Victorian Mitchelton stable and made in a contemporary fruit driven style. The single varietal merlot has been made for a number of years now which has almost led the market place (see the amount of single merlot Australian varietals around now). Has a lovely flavour of vanilla, coconut and cranberry. Great value. BUY OF THE MONTH

Preece Merlot 2000
Tasted: September 2003
The lovely warm 2000 summer in Victoria gave great ripening conditions for this merlot. I've drunk this wine for the last 3-4 years and now the importers have reduced the price (and definitely not the quality) it makes it even better for the buyer. Lovely plum and cherry flavours complement the soft tannin structure. Beautiful wine.

Preece Shiraz 2000
Tasted: July 2003
Both of these wines were being sold at 23.95, but we are able to bring these to you at a very special price indeed. You don't get many bargains these days so make the most of it.

Promessa Negroamaro 2001
Tasted: October 2003
The back label of this wine reads; "Once upon a time in the far south of Italy there lived an enchanted wine grape called Negroamaro. One day a fairy prince (actually just Mark) showed up and fell under her spell, for Negroamaro was one of the most beautiful grapes that Mark had ever seen. Her scent was like the heart of an apricot coloured rose and she had all the elegance and grace and flavour reward of a truly noble wine to preserve her beauty for eternity Mark made her a PROMESSA, and put her into this bottle. Enjoy it happily ever after". Couldn't resist repeating this. I did a search on this and discovered that the Mark mentioned is the winemaker from California and combines his New World talent with Italian grace and style. This is a seriously good wine, made from a varietal that is reminiscent to Zinfandel. It is a dark grape grown in the heel of Southern Italy. I'm not a fan of big jammy simplistic wines, I'd prefer wines that a more subtle, but with spice and different layers that you can contemplate and really enjoy a glass or two. This is what this is for me. Thought it was fabulous when I first tried it, and I've had a couple of bottles since. It reminds me of sunny, warm days in Tuscany and those fabulous big, ripe tomatoes. Stop torturing yourself Laurie!! Do try it though. Bound to cellar well.

Prunotto Barolo Classico 1997
Tasted: April 2002
Robert Parker Jr said of this wine, "The exotic 1997 Barolo offers aromas of liquorice, smoke, and overripe black cherries. It boasts powerful, concentrated, moderately tannic flavours, good glycerin and concentration as well as a spicy, well endowed, concentrated finish. Anticipated maturity: 2002 - 2014". 92/100 points.

Quart Reef Sparkling
Tasted: Christmas 2002
If I can't afford Veuve, then this is my pick from New Zealand. Ripe and rich with a lovely toasty finish.

Quartz Reef Chauvet
Tasted: Christmas 1999
From Central Otago this winery will take the world by storm once production is higher. It is in my opinion one of the best sparkling wines made outside of France, and I for one will be enjoying a bottle of Quartz Reef over the millennium.

Quartz Reef Methode
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Lovely creamy yeasty fizz from Central Otago.

Quartz Reef Pinot Gris 2002
Tasted: Christmas 2002
Rudi Bauer is proving to have a deft hand with Pinot Gris, and this wine is one of the stars of the vintage. Those that attended Rudi's recent tasting found this wine beguiling and it certainly repays the excitement generated by this vintage. Brim full of fruit, with fine minerally touches, and a creamy palate. Yum!

Quartz Reef Pinot Noir 1998
Tasted: Christmas 1999
We tried this wine over yum char at Mrs. Yips one Sunday and it was superb. It was up against some of NZ's best and it shone through with its superb fruit and luscious mouth filling texture. The quantities are small (given it is the first vintage) and will not be available for long.

Quartz Reef Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: June 2003
The last of this fabulous Bannockburn Pinot made by Rudi Bauer and is in my opinion, among the best 3 from 2001 vintage. Rich cherry flavours, complexity with savoury earthy hints. Great wine. Ideal with duck.

Quartz Reef Pinot Noir 2001
Tasted: September 2002
It's back and bigger and better than ever! Very rich and unctious, chock full of cherries, spice, perfumed and concentrated. Cellar for 2-3 years.

Quartz Reef Pint Gris 1999
Tasted: March 2000
Fantastic gold medal wine from this fledgling Central Otago winery and if this is recreated in future vintages will certainly set the wine-drinking world on fire. Dynamic wine worthy of a place in your cellar. I would predict that this wine will auction at much higher prices in 5 years or so. It will cellar well.

Queen Adelaide Riesling 2000
Tasted: July 2003
What a great buy! For those of you who like Australian Riesling this has a hint of kero and made in a just off dry style and with flavours on the lemon/lime end of the spectrum. It's drinking beautifully now but should develop even further with a couple of years in the bottle. A steal.

Queen Charlotte Pinot Noir '00
Tasted: November 2001
A special deal from Collards enables us to get this wine down to a fantastic price. Plum, berryish and savoury notes leap out of the glass, leading to a plummy silken palate. A fine example of Marlborough Pinot Noir at a price we can all afford. Best buy for Pinot under $30.

Quinta do Casto LBV Port 375 ml.
Tasted: Xmas 2000
Great with Xmas pud, rich and concentrated in a handy size.

Quinta do Crasto Donna Maria Theresa 1998
Tasted: September 2002
Quinta do Crasto is an exciting Portuguese producer focusing in the native grapes of Portugal, rather than the 'international' varieties, while also known for its Vintage Port. The Donna Maria Theresa is only produced in the very best years, from a small patch of old vines, with only 250 cases made. A real treat for the cellar, and a rare opportunity to experience one of the best that Portugal can produce.

Quinta do Crasto Touriga Nacional 99
Tasted: September 2002
The great grape of the Duoro, and as much in demand as the backbone of Vintage Port. Erratic cropping means that wines such as this are a rarity. Combines huge power and backbone with a silky mouthfeel. This is the first time that we've had this grape as a varietal. The price structure on these Portuguese wines is excellent as they sell for a similar amount of US dollars in North America. These wines are available in miniscule quantities with for example only 30 bottles of the Casa Cisca coming into the country. If you are interested in any of these wines, please do contact us quickly with your orders.

Red Ochre Grenache 1997
Tasted: February 2000
One of the most popular in the shop this season. Well priced and equal to any. Made by d'Arenberg Wines. Great food wine, but heh, just forget the food and enjoy the wine!

Redmetal Basket Press Merlot 1998
Tasted: Christmas 1999
Undoubtedly the best New Zealand red (other than Pinot) under $50.00. Excellent wine from this Hawkes Bay boutique winery. Cellar for several years. Bound to be a benchmark in NZ reds if the continue to make wines like this.

Remarkable No 1 Syrah 1999
Tasted: May 2001
Perhaps the most remarkable thing about this wine (yes the pun was intended) is that it hailed from Central Otago! '99 provided excellent ripening conditions in Central Otago leading to a couple of the Merlot and Syrah wines from the region hitting the market. The grapes for this wine were purchased by this negociant label from a well-respected Central label. It has a ripeness level that an Australian would be proud of. This one could really fool a few of the wine options set!

Remole 1998
Tasted: June 2001
Primarily Sangiovese with a little bit of Cabernet, with grapes being sourced mainly from three estates in the Chianti Rufina and Chianti Colli Fiorentini areas. Very much a modern internationally styled red.

Richmond Grove (Limited Release) Shiraz 1998
Tasted: August/September 2001
From the fabulous 1998 vintage, this is a wee beauty. It's already receiving attention with its gold medals from Australian wine shows. Owned by Orlando this small Barossa winery gains an impressive 4 stars by James Halliday and this particular wine is the mainstay from their range in the NZ market. Rich, ruby red in colour the subtle smoky vanilla oak from the American barrels shows a youthfulness that is truly exuberant. The palate is full, ripe, berryfruit and spice that lasts. Rock and roll. Will cellar well, but not at our place!

Richmond Grove Coonawarra Cabernet 1997
Tasted: April 2002
Under the guidance of John Vickery, Richmond Grove is releasing an excellent range of varietals, chosen from the areas in which each grape is perceived to do best. Thus, there is the Barossa Shiraz, Watervale Riesling and so on and of course this Coonawarra Cabernet. Drinking superbly well now, this is full of lush blackcurranty fruit with the classic Coonawarra mintiness. Normally $19.95. We also have a tiny allocation of the stunning '98 vintage due in, so if your interested, let us know. (Price to be confirmed for the '98)

Richmond Grove LR Cab Sauvignon '00
Tasted: March 2004
From the prestigious Coonawarra, area in South Australia, this cabernet is beautifully balanced wine. It has firm tannins, ripe fruit, balanced by hints of vanilla from the American oak. You would be hard pressed to find a better cabernet for under $20.

Richmond Grove Limited Release Cabernet Sauvignon 2000
Tasted: February 2004
Made from 100% Coonawarra cabernet fruit from the excellent 2000 vintage. This wine is packed full of ripe berry fruit flavours with hints of chocolate and mint, balanced by the soft tannins. Drinking well now but will keep for some time yet.

Richmond Grove Limited Release Shiraz 1997
Tasted: April 2001
Still a small amount of the Limited Release Richmond Grove Shiraz. Intensely rich, ripe and full of spice flavours that keeps you reaching for another glass.

Richmond Grove Limited Release Shiraz
Tasted: September 2003
This wine represents the best value for money year in, year out. The 2000 Barossa vintage was a good year favouring the ripening of Shiraz grapes to full colour, intense flavours and robust structure. The wine is full bodied and balanced by the fine oak tannin and a lovely long finish. It's drinking well now and should develop nicely with a couple of years in the bottle.

Richmond Grove Shiraz 1997
Tasted: February 2001
Rich and flavoursome. The spice and plum flavours have made this a favourite of ours this summer. For those who cellar this wine, I think it will show huge development in the bottle and you will be well rewarded for sitting on it for 5-8 years.

Richmond Grove Shiraz 2000
Tasted: March 2003
New vintage for one of our favorite reds. For the fans of the '99, this is EVEN BETTER!! Bigger and even more juicy. Yum yum.

Richmond Grove Watervale Riesling 1999
Tasted: October 2001
Made by John Vickery (the Mr Riesling of Australia) and somewhat of a classic. Clare Valley fruit give this wine lime and kero notes along with a creamy texture. A touch of dissolved CO2 on the front palate gives a refreshing spritz effect to the wine. Lovely rounded drinking, but history says this wine will age magnificently.

Riesling Auslese 1989
Tasted: April 2001
We had several wines from this Mosel co-operative last year, which went extremely well. Our suppliers continues to be able to source us aged wines from the cellars. A great opportunity to try a mature German Riesling.

Rimu Grove Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: September 2002
Some of you may have noticed this wine tucked in amongst our Chardonnays. Patrick and Barbera Stowe moved here from the Napa Valley and planted their three hectare vineyard near Mapua in Nelson area, producing both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. James Halliday rated it 93/100 with the following review; "Light to medium green yellow, melon, cashew and spice, together with some creamy malolactic nuances on the bouquet are followed by a truly stylish and elegant wine, showing skilled winemaking and handling in reaction to the fruit; melon, cashew and spice flavours run through a well balanced, long palate. A nigh on perfect debut"

Riverside Reserve Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: February 2004
Was $29.95. The last shipment sold out in 1 day. Big, bold style with rolls royce oak.

Riverstone Shiraz 2002
Tasted: July 2003
This is a great wee wine made by a well know Australian winery and which has been repackaged and sold at considerably less than the original (it happens all the time in Oz). It's full of spice and ripe berryfruit and well balanced by vanillin oak with soft tannins. The wine is in stelvin so can be guaranteed not to be corked!

Roberts Estate Chardonnay 1999
Tasted: May 2001
One of Charmian Smith's choices for best buys, and we agree. Fresh melon and citrus enhanced with gentle oak maturation. Ideal with fish and white meats.

Roberts Estate Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: June 2001
Charmian Smith's wine if the week, and no wonder. Delicious, ripe melon flavours and a nice touch of toasty oak at a user-friendly price.

Roberts Estate Merlot 2000
Tasted: June 2001
From Victoria, this is not what you think of when you consider Australian Merlot. It's big, warm and cuddly, and a nice change.

Robertson's Well Cab. Sauvignon 1997
Tasted: June 2000
Gold medal winner. Everything a good Coonawarra cabernet should be. Intense and rich fruit. This wine has been greatly reduced, so I suggest you buy a case for the cellar.

Robertson's Well Cabernet '01
Tasted: June 2003
This label has been a favourite of ours since we opened the shop 7 years ago. The first vintage that we stocked was the 1993 Cabernet, which was a stunner and this, was followed a couple of years later with the Shiraz. Both made from grapes grown in the Coonawarra area. This wine is sumptuous, juicy and full of ripe berry flavours. Drinking superbly now, however this is a great wine to put aside in the cellar and guaranteed to please after a couple of years.

Robertson's Well Shiraz 1998
Tasted: August 2000
5 stars in Cuisine. Very powerful, spicy fruit, yet elegant in its structure. From a vintage year. This was a sell-out after the Cuisine Shiraz tasting second to the beloved Eileen Hardy and by far the wine most preferred by tasters as the most value for money in the tasting;

Robertson's Well Shiraz 1998
Tasted: June 2000
When one thinks of Coonawarra one thinks of Cabernet, but this is one of the small bands of excellent Shiraz from this region. Quite different in style from the McLaren Vale and Barossa wines we see most often and all the better for it. For me, it's spice, cracked pepper, and that tarry liquorice note more reminiscent of Victoria, with intense underlying berry fruit. Enjoy it now or cellar mid term.

Robertson's Well Shiraz 1999
Tasted: June 2002
This winery has been a favourite in our house for years. Whether it is their Shiraz or their Cabernet, Robertson's Well is one of those 'Mr or Ms Consistent' wines that has been underrated for some time. It's one that you can rely on vintage through vintage. This vintage shows the wine at its' best. It is an excellent wine. Deep purple colour, with dried spicy components and sweet berry aromas. On the palate it is elegant and savoury. Very, very stylish. Packed with flavours and good tannins. Will cellar. Try it with roast lamb.

Robertson's Well Shiraz 2000
Tasted: June 2003
Intense varietal nose, deep red in colour and followed by fabulous spice, blackberry and plum fruit on the palate. The touch of vanillin oak smoothes out the wine to make this a total pleasure to drink. This will impress both you and perhaps a few good friends (if they are lucky!). If you're familiar with the RW Shiraz, you'll note that this price is at least $3.00 down.

Rockford Basket Press Shiraz 1999
Tasted: April 2003
One of the most individually spectacularly flavoured wines from Australia. I remember trying this for first time in the Barossa Valley in the mid- eighties and being totally blown away by the depth of flavour, fruit and it's share difference. At that time, the wine was made in tiny quantities and was only available from the cellar-door. Now, thank God, you don't have to travel the miles to purchase this very special wine. It's made from very old, low yielding vines. The palate is spectacular with an explosion of black spice and fruit flavours. Still a good price for a classic wine.

Rockford Dry Country Grenache 1997
Tasted: May 2000
We have managed to source one more case of this wine at a bargain basement price (it should be $26). This is serious grenache, dry farmed i.e. un-irrigated, intensely flavoured and capable of cellaring for a few years. This is a good as it gets for Barossa grenache.

Rockford Moppa Springs 1998
Tasted: June 2002
Rockford is one of my favorite South Australian wineries producing wines of uncommon depth and flavour from old vine unirrigated fruit. In 1998 they had a very diminished yield in their Grenache crop: too much so to make their usual varietal grenache, so they chose to create their first southern Rhoney blend with the addition of syrah and Mataro (Mouvedre). This has all the spicy savoury flavours you'd expect from the blend, with the chocolatey richness from old vine fruit. Yum! An each way cellaring bet.

Rosemount 'Hill of Gold' Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
Tasted: June 2001
Alright, don't call me indecisive, but I have actually changed my mind! Maybe it's winter and snow, or maybe it's because I'm off to South Australia this week, who knows, but last month I picked the "Hill of Gold" Shiraz, and this month I have chosen the Cabernet Sauvignon. Dense purple-red with a voluminous bouquet of blackcurrant, earth and cedar. A no holds-barred on the palate with gobs of rich, ripe plummy fruit. Several golds to its name. Bound to find a bottle or to in the Barossa.

Rosemount Balmoral 1998
Tasted: February 2004
We managed to obtain a few more bottles of this classic Aussi shiraz. This is a monster! Exceptionally chunky, rich and powerful. Very spicy with overtones of pepper and coffee. An absolute treat!

Rosemount Balmoral 1999
Tasted: September 2003
From the very low yielding vines in the McLaren Vale, this is a real treat. A monster, exceptionally powerful, chunky, cherry and rich. Very full-bodied with a lot of extract, and very generous chocolate flavours. Still a relative bargain. Cellar and serve with a big steak. You will reap the benefit of cellaring for the auction market, as this is a collector's item.

Rosemount Cabernet Merlot 2001
Tasted: February 2002
Another wine in the Cuisine Top 10. Packed with juicy berry fruit and cassis flavours. Great value for money.

Rosemount Diamond Label Shiraz 1999
Tasted: February 2000
The perfect wine to pull out when you want to share a bottle with a group of friends. Halliday gives these wine 4 stars, and no wonder with the quality of fruit and excellent balance of oak and tannins. We have been alternating this with the Cedar Creek Chardonnay 98 ($9.95) for excellent quaffing. Lovely spicy fruit and a wine that suits most palates. Jim and I have enjoyed several of these good quaffers over the holiday period.

Rosemount Hill of Gold Shiraz 1999
Tasted: May 2001
Trophy and gold medal winner. Limited quantities of this delicious Shiraz, but I will leave some to buy this year. Superb concentrated spicy rich berry fruit with delicious oak maturation. Velvety smooth wine to enjoy now. Will cellar well for at least 5 to 8 years (if you can resist).

Rosemount Mountain Blue Shiraz Cabernet 1997
Tasted: June 2000
Hailing from Mudgee in NSW this is one of Rosemount's flagship wines. James Halliday wrote the following review in his winepros web site "The smooth power and balance of the bouquet flows into a satiny/velvety palate with succulent ripe berry fruit and seamless, integrated French and American oak. The tannins are equally soft and ripe. Liquid seduction!" Rated 95. A special wine indeed!

Rosemount Pinot Noir 1998
Tasted: February 2000
You can't go wrong with the Rosemount Diamond label wines, and the Pinot Noir makes drinking Pinot's more affordable. Not the enormous style of Martinborough or Felton Road Block 3, but then again you aren't paying through the nose for this. Excellent wine, excellent value.

Rosemount Shiraz 2000
Tasted: April 2001
Tried this week and what a nice surprise! Rich, spicy raspberry flavours with gentle American oak. Great for your house wine at home.

Rosemount Show Reserve Shiraz 1997
Tasted: August 2000
Another great wine from the irrepressible Rosemount team. Full-bodied rich and very concentrated this is a powerful assertive wine with wonderful spicy flavours. Exactly what you would expect from this label.

Rosemount Traditional 2001 Jimmy Watson
Tasted: September 2003
A blend of cabernet merlot and petite verdot, this is the first release. Very rich and opulent and full of plums, cassis chocolate and spice flavours. This is a huge wine and as gorgeous as it is now it will only get better with 8--10 years of cellaring in good conditions. The Jimmy Watson award is one of the most prestigious awards in the Australian show circuit and is awarded to the best one-year old wine in Australia and has been won by prestigious wines like Elderton Command Shiraz and the Eileen Hardy. This wine will be shown at this month's Rosemount tasting.

Ross Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2000
Tasted: October 2003
A big Barossa Cabernet. Mint, eucalypt, hints of blackberries and chocolate. A new label for us. Going by this wine hopefully not a flash in the pan one-wine wonder. Try with a pepper steak or any steak for that matter. Yum yum.

Rothbury Chardonnay 1998
Tasted: February 2001
Another one of the great bargains from Australia. The palate is packed with peach, figs and melon with a touch of toasty oak to balance this into a great easy drinking wine.

Rothbury Chardonnay 98
Tasted: October 2000
Gold Medal Adelaide Wine Show. Fresh melon and peach varietal flavours and aromas matured in oak. A perfect accompaniment for fresh pasta or chicken dishes. Saltram Mamre Brook Shiraz 98 & Saltram Mambre

Rothesay Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: November 2001
Normally $30, this is from the magnificent 2000 vintage in Auckland. And is right up there with our greatest Chardonnays. Elegant, yet rich, mouthfilling flavours. Packed with ripe peach, citrus and nuts. One of my personal favourites. A beautiful balance of fruit and oak.

Rothesay Sauvignon Blanc 2000
Tasted: November 2001
Fabulous wine at this price. Very ripe and mouthfilling, with some complexity from partial barrel fermentation and 30% malolactic. Tropical, limey: my kind of Sav.

Sacred Hill 'Whitecliff' Pinot Gris 2003
Tasted: October 2003
Brand new release from Sacred Hill. Made from a blend of Italian Pinot Grigio (97%) and New Zealand Pinot Gris (3%). The reason behind this is to provide a Pinot Gris on the market that doesn't break the bank and is available in reasonably large quantities so that it doesn't run out a couple of weeks after it's release. It's a fairly dry and light style with soft apple and pear flavours with a hint of spice. One for those long balmy summer evenings...if we ever get any!

Sacred Hill BF Chardonnay 1998
Tasted: June 2000
Hand harvested Mendoza grapes. Like the Riflemans the grapes are whole bunch pressed in the gentlest manner, before going into French barriques for maturation. Results in a rich complex and aromatic creamy wine.

Sacred Hill Barrel Ferment Chardonnay 2000
Tasted: February 2002
The big brother to the Whitecliff Chardonnay, and with greater depth of flavour and added complexity. Barrel fermentation leads to a nicely integrated spicy oak component, overlaid on the fruit, with its tropical and nutty hints. A good partner for veal and chicken dishes.

Sacred Hill Barrel Fermented Chard '02
Tasted: July 2003
The new vintage of this robust Chardonnay from Hawkes Bay. Rich, ripe tropical fruit flavours marry well with the mealy toasty oak. A pretty serious wine which could benefit from a couple of years in the cellar.

Sacred Hill Riesling 2002
Tasted: March 2004
A solid style of off-dry riesling. Very classic Marlborough wine with prominent lemon, lime and most other citrus fruit flavours. Will cellar well.

Sacred Hill Rifleman's Chardonnay '98
Tasted: June 2000
Couldn't go past this Chardonnay for a special occasion. It has been superbly handled with the grapes being hand-harvested and whole bunch pressed before being matured in top quality French oak. Elegant creamy melon flavours to savour and enjoy.

Sacred Hill Whitecliff Chardonnay '01
Tasted: September 2002
One of the best of the inexpensive NZ Chardonnay's. I like this because its full of ripe peach flavours and the oak is not too dominant. A great summer quaffer with enough complexity to make it interesting.

Sacred Hill Whitecliff Chardonnay 2001
Tasted: February 2002
A pleasant discovery for us from this over achieving Hawkes Bay winery. Lightly oaked, with ripe stonefruit and a touch of citrus; lees stirring has enhanced the creamy textured palate. This wine has become rather a favourite in store recently.

Sacred Hill Whitecliff Est. Pinot Gris '03
Tasted: February 2004
This great Pinot Gris is now back in stock. Skilfully blended from premium Italian and New Zealand grapes this wine delivers classic spicy

Saddleback Pinot Noir 2002
Tasted: September 2003
Lovely soft Pinot from Central Otago with lots of cherry flavours. Made by a well-known continental winemaker! Great value

Saddlers Creek Watermark Shiraz 2001
Tasted: March 2004
A classy fruit driven style of shiraz. The hints of oak compliment the white pepper and blackberry beautifully. Drinks well now, however if put it in the cellar and happen to stumble upon it in a few years, you wouldn't regret it.

Saint Clair Sav Blanc 2002
Tasted: Christmas 2002
This Marlborough producer is a perennial winner in the Cuisine Top 10 awards for its Sav Blancs and Chardonnays, and this is the case again this year. Another ripely fruited style with touches of redcurrant overlaid on to the passionfruit and gooseberry fruit. Added complexity comes from the touches of 'sweat'.

Saints Sav Blanc 2002
Tasted: Christmas 2002
A stand-alone label under the Montana umbrella, of which many of you will have admired the Chardonnay over the years, for it has been a consistently damn nice drinking wine at a fair price. Sourced from vineyards in the Awatere Valley, this has ripe red capsicums and tropical fruit nuances overlaid on zingy herbaceousness, and a nice textured palate.

Salena Shiraz 2000
Tasted: April 2003
Another wee beauty from South Australia. Gold medal in the Top 100 show. Full of ripe berry fruit. Great value to go with a steak or bbq.

Salena Shiraz 2000
Tasted: July 2003
beauty at this price. A gold medal under 15 is a rarity and one that although is drinking well now, will benefit from a couple of years in the cellar

Salisbury Cabernet 1999
Tasted: May 2001
A few years ago a group of us visited the Salisbury vineyards in the heavily irrigated area of Riverlands in North Eastern Victoria. This area produces something like 70% of all grapes grown in Australia. Astonishing really. Ripe rounded berryfruit with gentle tannins. Outstanding value. How do they do it at this price---with irrigation!

Salisbury Cabernet Merlot 1999
Tasted: April 2001
Bargain Aussi red! Very ripe, smooth and plummy. One of the very few drinkable reds remaining in this price range.

Salisbury Cabernet Merlot 2000
Tasted: May 2001
The other thing that Salisbury were doing, which was a first, was using wood staves in their wines (this was light-years ahead of NZ) and this gave the wines the depth and texture of more expensive grapes. The Cabernet merlot has rich, cherry, berry and blackcurrant flavours with a hint of the old eucalyptus (mint). Great price.

Salisbury Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Tasted: July/August 2001
A little Aussi ripper! Good fruit, nice toasty oak, packed with blackcurrants, at a great price.

Saltram Cabernet 2001 and Saltram Shiraz 2001
Tasted: April 2003
Two of our old favourite everyday drinking wines and ones that Lyn would have picked as her wines of the month no doubt. These have been one of our best sellers in the past, are now back in stock and at an even better price which makes them excellent value. Will be fantastic with either a stuffed leg of lamb or with pasta etc.

Saltram Classic Shiraz 1998
Tasted: February 2000
Another of Lyn's favorites, I know this because she often takes it to Mrs. Yip's. The flavours of black cherries and spice are a wonderful match with both the plum duck and Peking duck.

Saltram Classic Shiraz 1998
Tasted: March 2000
Rich cherry and berry flavours and soft velvety tannins. One of Lyn's favourites.




| main | picks of the month | tasted wines | newsletter | links |