New Zealand, rich wine diversity
Besides the big two, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, New Zealand grows an eclectic range of grape varieties to produce a wide range of styles of wine. In order of plantings, from largest to smallest, Sauvignon Blanc is followed by Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Sauvignon Gris, and Viognier. In red, Pinot Noir is followed by Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and Cabernet Franc. These account for most, but by no means all grape varieties grown in New Zealand. Mostly the vineyard plantings will have been selected to suit the specific vineyard terroir, which is a complex patchwork in New Zealand, and still evolving. Yet, at the same time, a pattern has already taken shape. Vines are well-established and styles of wine have emerged by region and sub-region. Today, we will touch on one: Hawke`s Bay, on the east coast of the North Island. NZ`s second largest wine growing region produces delicious Chardonnays, but it is best known for its red wines, growing most of NZ`s Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah vines; and since it has a similar maritime climate to Bordeaux in France, it is perhaps not surprising that it has established an excellent reputation for its Bordeaux blends. Indeed, Gimblett Gravels is a sub region within it which is not unlike the Medoc in Bordeaux with its deep, free-draining stony gravels, where Cabernet Sauvignon is King. In Gimblett Gravels they are ancient silts and greywacke stones, deposited by the old Ngaruroro river, and exposed after a huge flood in the 1860`s. For me, here, Syrah is King, not Cab. I urge you to try Trinity Hill Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2018, £26.99 per bottle. It has the most amazing wild raspberry aroma, pure of fruit, with cracked pepper and hints of vanilla bean. It is powerful and has balanced ripe tannins, with refreshing natural acidity. Great to drink now, it will evolve over ten years. If you can wait!! Last chance today & tomorrow to take advantage of discounts available in-store for all New Zealand wines.