What I’ve been drinking – 005

The finished product

Craggy Range Les Beaux Cailloux Gimblett Gravels Vineyard Chardonnay 2009
Drunk over 3 days, sealed after the first day then sealed with a wine saver (argon gas) after the second day. Colour, incredibly pale straw with a tinge of green, looks like a good Chablis. On the nose and palate it was a lot softer and subtler than expected, I had sampled their Gimblett Gravels Vineyard Chardonnay 2009 previously, see my notes here*. This is a much more complex wine that will require some additional bottle age as it was showing much more on the second day. Beautiful pear and apricot fruits on the nose with just a hint of citrus and some smokey oak coming through, at 13% the alcohol doesn’t overpower. The palate has a mouth filling smooth (oily in a good way) feel that carries the fruit over the mid palate blending it with a touch of honey and finishing with a bit of an acidic kick that helps hold together a very long finish.
Only two more bottles in the cellar and they will need to wait, will be added to with a few new vintages each year as this is a great wine, in a style that has a blend of a Chablis 1st Cru and a Meursault 2 to give it that beautiful rounded feel.

Purchased at the winery while in New Zealand $58.00 in a mixed dozen.

BTW congratulations to the All Backs for winning the Rugby World Cup, for a while I thought the French were going to roll them.

Craggy Range – Single Vineyard Wines from New Zealand

Picardy Tete de Cuvee 2008
The Gardener was over with friends on Saturday night and brought this gem with him, this is his take on purchasing the wine and subsequent events.

“Yes… He said to me that wine will cellar for another 20 years.  And I said “well I’m not sure it’s going to get the chance as I’m taking it over to a friend’s place tonight to drink…Although he does have an extensive cellar so he may just put it away and bring something else out!” Sure enough, as if  by magic, the 08 Picardy Tete de Cuvee Pinot Noir morphed into the 04. And what a magnificent drop it was.”

It was well worth swapping the 2008 for an 04 as the 04 has grown as a wine and is drinking superbly with lots of dark red fruit, oak and forest floor notes on the nose. Followed by a rich silky smooth palate that packs a punch that even a Shiraz drinker can’t ignore, flavours of dark berry balanced with a long savory finish, the bottle did not last long only one left in the cellar.

The 2004 was purchased from the winery and was about $50.00 the 08 sells for $65.00

Picardy Wines

CM Cab Sav 2007

Cape Mentelle Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Also drunk on Saturday night.
From a good producer and a great vintage, you can’t go wrong and it’s not a Howard Park. This is my idea of what Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon should be at this price level. Drank with dinner, BBQ’d roasted pork loin on the bone with crackle served with a garden salad and a cold pesto and rice salad. Being a big earthy wine bound up with a good amount of oak, that is still hiding some of the fruit, it suited the meal without overpowering it. Probably should have been decanted to let some of those dark and red berry flavours too emerge more into their own.

Supplied by JA retails for around $70.00 if you can find it.

Cape Mentelle

* New Zealand regions – Hawke’s Bay

1 Chablis 1st Cru

2 Meursault

This entry was posted in Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Reviews. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to What I’ve been drinking – 005

  1. Another great post – I’m pleased to see we (maybe…) have a Craggy Range fan in you? Personally, the Les Beaux Cailloux completely changed the way I thought about NZ Chardonnay and I am now, proudly, a total convert to the complex and balanced Hawkes Bay style.
    Look forward to reading more about the wines you collected while in New Zealand – and yes, we’re very pleased to have won the World Cup too. It was an excruciating game to watch!

    • Thanks, I am. I first drink Craggy Range’s Calvert Vineyard Pinot Noir at Petite Mort Restaurant run by an ex Kiwi Chef Tod Stuart. From then on I was keen to visit the winery because Craggy Range’s concept of single vineyard wines.

  2. acepfv says:

    I witnessed that magic event and can testify that the 04 “packs a punch that even a shiraz drinker can’t ignore” I couldn’t…

  3. That was aimed at you 😉

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