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Hunter's Wines

PO Box 839 Rapaura Road, Blenheim, New Zealand Tel: 064 (0) 3572 8489

An impressive line up of wines from this well-regarded New Zealand producer. All the wines are fresh and intense: the only disappointments were the Pinot Noir, which came across as fruity and simple, and the Gewurztraminer, which lacked intensity and character.

Gewurztraminer 1998
Attractive, sweetly spiced nose is followed by a lively palate. There is good balance, but a hint of bitterness to the finish. I'm not sure whether this wine really works for me.

Sauvignon blanc 1999
Wonderful, intense nose, with in-your-face elderflower and gooseberry-like fruit. Well balanced on the palate, this is very good, and perhaps just a touch more Loire-like than many of its peers.

Sauvignon blanc Oak Aged 1997
This is super stuff. The freshness of the Sauvignon is given a lift by careful oak treatment. Sophisticated and very good.

Chardonnay 1997
This is savoury and balanced on the palate, tending more to the lemony expression of this grape than the tropical fruit bowl. Despite the reasonably strong oaking, the wine retains a fresh character and is well balanced. Very good.

Pinot Noir 1998
Bright cherry colour. Clean, light and fresh with cherry fruit dominating the palate. A little simple at the moment, but there is some tannic structure and it may evolve nicely. But then again, it may not!

Merlot Cabernet 1998
A 65%/35% blend. Beautiful clean nose of vegetation and sweet fruit, betraying the predominance of Merlot in the blend. Fresh, soft and herbaceous, but ripe. There is some structure hiding in the background. Very good.

Mirumiru Marlborough Brut 1997
Light, attractive fizz that is subtle and yeasty.