Archive Tasting Notes

2010 Chardonnay
Another ripe citrus / stonefruit style with hints of butterscotch and sweet vanillin oak. Clean, fresh and well balanced, it works as an aperitif or with food. Serve lightly chilled.

2009 Chardonnay
Hallmark citrus and peach fruit flavours with a touch of oak and hints of butterscotch for interest and depth. Beautifully balanced and ready to drink, with a cellar life of 3-4 years. Serve lightly chilled.

2008 Chardonnay
Very ripe stonefruit and citrus characters backed up with subtle aromatic oak. A fruit forward and food friendly style with a balanced, lingering finish. Designed for early
drinking, but will cellar comfortably for 3-4 years. Best served lightly chilled.

2007 Chardonnay
Our first foray into white wine, this is a lightly oaked style with citrus and stonefruit flavours and a clean, refreshing finish. Perfect for current drinking but will cellar for 2-3 years if you feel the need.

2012 Rose
Subtle strawberry fruit with savoury notes and a dry finish in an impeccably balanced and food-friendly style. Designed for current drinking and best served chilled.

2011 Rose
Subtle red berryfruit with savoury notes and a dry finish in an impeccably balanced and food-friendly style. Designed for current drinking and best served chilled.

2008 Rose
A beautiful ruby colour with aromas of raspberry and dried herb. Ripe red fruit and savoury yeast / herb notes on the palate  combine with soft acidity to give a hugely drinkable wine that  works with a wide range of food styles.

2007 Rose
Light in colour, with complex berry and savoury flavours along with a dry finish and a hefty 14% alcohol. A Mediterranean food-friendly style best served lightly chilled.

2006 Rose
A light fruity wine with wonderful red berry and dark plum flavours and a soft and very food friendly dry finish. A versatile and very drinkable style of wine best served lightly chilled.

2005 Rose
A concentrated, fruity wine bursting with dark berry and ripe plum flavours and supported by complex barrel ferment characters and a food friendly dry finish. A versatile and easy going style of wine best served lightly chilled.

2004 Rosé  
Dark in colour, vibrantly fruity with hints of oak and a soft finish. This is a great dry style for al fresco summer dining. Serve slightly chilled.

2003 Rosé
The 2003 Rosé is a succulent, fruity style with wild berry and dark plum characters underpinned by a hint of oak and a dry finish. A versatile and stylish wine made to go with food. Serve very lightly chilled.

2002 Rosé
Typically dark in colour (for a Rosé), this wine shows the usual red berryfruit with a touch of oak and a fresh finish well suited to a warm summers afternoon. Great food wine when a white just doesn't do it and a big red would kill the culinary offerings. Enjoy it lightly chilled at any time of the day.

2001 Rosé
Dark and vibrantly fruity with a round, soft palate, this is the ideal accompaniment to alfresco summer dining. Serve lightly chilled.

2000 Rosé
Lush, ripe red berryfruit, toasty vanillin oak and light, soft tannins make up the wonderful summer flavours of this serious light red wine. Serve very lightly chilled.

1999 Rosé
Blended from Merlot and Cabernet Franc and barrel fermented as usual, the Rosé has typically deep colour with berryfruit and vanillin oak characters. It is deliciously fat and soft.

1998 Rosé
Based on our 25 Brix Cabernet Franc from the very warm 1998 vintage, this wine is another contender for the light red class. Raspberry fruit with a hint of oak from barrel fermentation add to the huge 14% alcohol giving it plenty of weight. Serve lightly chilled.

1997 Rosé
A barrel fermented Merlot / Cabernet blend more in the style of a Mediterranean light red than a typical Rosé. Serious summer lunch wine.

2012 Syrah
Great colour, classic cracked pepper and plums on the nose, and soft tannins make this a very food friendly wine with 4-5 years cellaring potential.

2013 Merlot/Franc
From an outstanding vintage, this is a very dark, super-ripe and concentrated wine, with dark fruit flavours, silky tannins and great length. It will easily cellar for 5 years or more, but is dangerously drinkable right now.

2012 Merlot/Franc
A warm, ripe wine with red and black berryfruit characters, subtle oak, soft tannins and the usual drinkability of Hawke's Bay red wines. Approachable now or cellar it for 3-5 years.

2009 Merlot/Franc
A great follow on from the 2008, with ripe, dark fruit characters, soft tannins and the hallmark drinkability of warm vintage Hawke's Bay red wines. Approachable now or cellar it for 4-5 years.
"Wine of the week" Mike Cooper, NZ Listener May 2011

2008 Merlot/Franc
Dark and ripe, with lots of primary fruit and soft finishing tannins. Medium weight and another very drinkable example from Hawkes Bay, with the ability to cellar comfortably for 5 years or more.

2007 Merlot / Franc
Deep colour with ripe black plum characters and a touch of 
cedary oak. Rich fruit with soft tannins and plenty of weight. Excellent food wine with great drinkability but also the structure to cellar for 4-5 years

2006 Merlot / Franc
From a very warm, dry year, this is a rich and ripe style, with plum and dark berry flavours and soft tannins. Very approachable now, but will reward cellaring for the next 3-5 years.

2005 Merlot / Franc
This 67% Merlot blend shows typically ripe plum and red berryfruit flavours with supple tannins and a soft finish giving it  great drinkability. A perfect food wine that is ready to drink now, but will comfortably cellar for 3-5 years.

2004 Merlot / Franc
Ripe plum and dark berryfruit flavours predominate in this 64:36 blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, while subtle oak and soft tannins add to it's drinkability. A great food wine that is ready to drink now, but it will happily cellar for another 3-4 years.

2003 Merlot / Cabernet Franc
Soft, fruity and very food-friendly, this 76% Merlot / 24% Franc is a drink young style, with ripe, plummy fruit flavours and subtle, integrated oak. Perfect with rare beef or venison, lamb shanks or a simple Margherita pizza. Great drinking now, but a couple of years in the cellar won't do it any harm.

2002 Merlot / Franc
The 2002 Merlot / Franc has a ton of colour, with the usual combination of plum and dark berryfruit flavours, savoury oak and soft finishing tannins. Great drinking now and over the next 4 or 5 years.

2001 vintage not made

2000 Merlot / Cabernet Franc / Cabernet Sauvignon
From a warm and very dry  vintage, this wine shows the weight and extract of fully ripe, fleshy Merlot combined with the tannin structure and aromatics of excellent Cabernet Franc. It is a blend of  52%Merlot,  35% Cabernet Franc and  13% Cabernet Sauvignon. A classy little package from a very good year.

1999 Merlot / Cabernet Franc / Cabernet Sauvignon
Primary berryfruit flavours, firm tannins and a soft finish add up to an excellent food style of red wine. 45% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Franc provide the aromatic fruit and palate weight, while a touch of Cabernet Sauvignon tones up the structure.

1998 Merlot / Cabernet Sauvignon / Cabernet Franc
A blend of 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Cabernet Franc, this wine was handled the same way as the Basket press. It has a little less new oak and a lighter tannin structure as befits an earlier drinking style, but shows the warmth and weight of an outstanding vintage.  Ripe plum and berryfruit characters predominate, with warm, round tannins and a soft finish.

1997 Merlot / Cabernet Sauvignon / Cabernet Franc
With the first crop of Cabernet Franc available this vintage, our second label is a more complete blend along the lines of the proportions currently planted in the vineyard. It was handled the same way as the Basket Press, with only a light egg white fining and no filtration. The level of new oak has been reduced to 50% to allow greater expression of the fruit characters.
Ripe berryfruit and subtle oak characters with soft tannins make this wine immediately appealing for current drinkability.

1996 Merlot
Redmetal Vineyards second label. Softer and more seductive now, it is still showing great depth of colour with wonderfully ripe berryfruit characters and strong, spicy oak. Although this wine is our 'early drinking' label, it will certainly cellar for 4 or 5 years.

2006 Mt Erin Merlot / Franc
From a warm vintage, this wine is dark in colour with ripe, mouthfilling plum and blackberry flavours and a soft, lingering finish. Great food wine in a typically elegant Hawkes Bay style that will easily cellar for 4-6 years.

2005 Mt Erin Merlot / Franc
A dark and mouth-filling wine which is 75% Merlot with a large dash of Cabernet Franc to add spice, colour and structure. Plum and dark berry flavours are supported by subtle oak and soft tannins  to give a long and balanced finish. Cellar for up to 6 or 7 years.

2004 Mt Erin Merlot / Franc

2010 Basket Press Merlot/Franc
A dark, rich and ripe wine, with classic black fruit characters and cedary oak along with a backbone of fine, soft tannins that give it up to a decade of cellaring potential, although it is very hard to resist now.

2003 Basket Press not made

2002 Basket Press Merlot / Cabernet Franc
A blend of 95% Merlot and just 5% Cabernet Franc. Masses of plummy red fruit, soft, ripe tannins and an excellent future ahead of it.

2001 Basket Press not made

2000 Basket Press Merlot / Cabernet Franc
Deep purple in colour, this vintage is a blend of 68% Merlot and 32% Cabernet Franc. It is dark and dense with typical black plum and licorice notes, along with fine tannins and a soft, lingering finish. A rich and fleshy style that will age well.

1999 Basket Press Merlot / Cabernet Franc
Medium / dark purple in colour, our top label is again dominated by sweet, ripe plum and berryfruit flavours, supported by savoury oak and well structured tannins. It is a more elegant style than the 1998, but still shows the trademark balance and palate texture of it's predecessors. 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc.

1998 Basket Press Merlot / Cabernet Franc
The 1998 vintage was, not to put too fine a point on it, superb. Merlot was an outstanding performer and the blend again shows the excellent results that we are getting from both this variety and Cabernet Franc in Hawkes Bay. Hand plunged in small open vats and left on skins for over 3 weeks to stabilize colour and build up tannin, the wine was then pumped to barriques for 14 months maturation. A light egg white fining smoothed out the rough edges prior to bottling without filtration.
Plum, licorice and savoury oak dominate the nose and palate, with lots of fine tannin adding structure and texture to the wine.

1997 Basket Press Merlot / Cabernet Franc
Our top label from 1997 is a blend of 89% Merlot and 11% Cabernet Franc. As with the previous vintage, this wine was fermented in 2 tonne open fermenters and hand plunged to build up colour and tannin. Following a period of post ferment maceration on skins, it was pressed off and pumped to 225 litre barriques for 12 months maturation. The best blocks from our vineyard were selected for this blend and given a light egg white fining prior to bottling. The wine is unfiltered. Ripe plummy fruit combines with savoury French and American oak to flesh out the palate and lead into a long, soft finish with smooth supporting tannins.


1996 Basket Press Merlot / Cabernet Sauvignon
A deeply coloured wine with intense plum and blackcurrant flavours supported by generous layers of savoury new oak. It is built to cellar for at least 3 or 4 years, although it will comfortably develop in the bottle for a decade. Try to resist the temptation to drink it too young.


2013 Basket Press Syrah
"Deeply tinted red with chocolate, licorice, plum, dark berry and black pepper flavours. A structure of ripe tannins makes the wine easy to appreciate now but provides cellaring potential. An elegant wine with power."
95 points  5 stars  

The Merlot is only made in outstanding vintages

2000 The Merlot
Again a dark, inky colour, this vintage shows the depth and extract that is possible from Merlot in Hawkes Bay. It continues to exhibit classic plum, chocolate, licorice and prune characters, with  mouth-coating tannins and layers of flavour on the finish. A wine that is built for the long haul, it requires 4 or 5 years in the bottle to show at it's best.

1998 The Merlot
Deep, inky purple in colour, this modestly named wine is our answer to Le Pin, Petrus, James Irvine and most of Waiheke Island. It has aromas of prunes, licorice and Mediterranean summers, with concentrated flavours of plum and blackberry on the palate.
Made from low yielding vines grown on the dry river gravels of 'Block 5' , the hand harvested fruit was fermented in small open vats and hand plunged every 8 hours to extract colour and tannin. After 4 weeks of post ferment maceration on skins to stabilize the colour and build up a serious tannin structure, the wine was put into small oak barrels for a 14 month maturation.We recommend cellaring for at least 5 years and expect the wine to live well into it's teens.

2007 Erinview Vineyard Merlot
Deeply coloured and super-ripe wine, with dark plum and licorice characters followed by dark chocolate tannins on the finish. Concentrated and mouth-filling with luxurious, fine-grained tannins providing structure, this will mature gracefully over 8-10 years.




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