(2021) A small proportion of this is aged in Acacia wood barrels, which perhaps adds to the intense florality of the nose, a really expressive take on Viognier that verges on Gewürztraminer aromatics, and makes sense of the pairing with the Te Whare Ra 'Toru'. In the mouth it is rich in texture and full of luscious fruit, moving into pineapple from apricot. There is acidity here, but I confess the whole thing feels just a little heavy in the mouth.
(2021) A lovely Chardonnay this, if one of the more straightforward in the line-up. Fermented and aged in new and 1- to 2-year-old French oak barrels. centered around citrus and oatmeal on the nose, the palate has sweetly ripe fruit and medium body, a nice juiciness to the finish. Not available in UK retail at time of review.
(2020) Peach and melon, a little buttery character, but clean and fresh. The palate has modest but charming sweet fruit. Tangy, citrus finish. Price and stockist for previous vintage at time of review.
(2020) Back on the creamier, more oak influenced style, vanilla and ripe orchard fruits, moving into a nice orange and tangerine acidity, quite long, quite stylish. No UK retail stockists listed at time of review.
(2020) Again, a combination of stainless steel tanks and puncheons for ferment and ageing, though not much oak influence on the nose. From shallow, warm clay loam soils near Cape Kidnappers in Hawke's Bay, lots of punchy citrus, orchard fruits, ripe fruit sweetness, a touch of waxy lemon character. A little nutty infill from the oak and good, lightly salty acidity balances nicely.
(2020) With 55% Marsanne and 45% Viognier, whole bunches go into old puncheons for indigenous ferment. 100% Malolactic. A touch of creaminess and oatmeal, a nice little floral note, honeysuckle, then the fruit bursts onto the palate with great, cool ripeness, all the pear and apricot but a firmness to the finish, lemon rind and a bit of phenolic grip.
(2020) The vine material originally came from Condrieu for this Viognier, and a little bit of the wood used for barrel ageing is Acacia. Jasmine, roses, flowers and herbs, apricot. The mouth-feel is soft and creamy, with good acidity, a bit of sherbetty phenolic grip to brighten the finish. Nicely done and carries 14% alcohol well. Price and stockist is for a previous vintage at time of review.
(2020) Made from the Mendoza clone (with its hen and chick tendency), and low-cropped. Part wild yeast fermentation in barrel. The oak is subtle, again a little Jack Daniels note, but then mouth-watering juiciness with lemon and fennel, apple fruit and the acid line playing against a little soft nougat or almond. Price and stockist quoted at time of review is for the previous vintage.
(2016) Cooled by nearby ocean breezes, Craggy Range's Kindnappers Chardonnay comes from a single vineyard and has a quite delicate nose, natural feeling with some older oak adding savouriness and very gentle toast, and clean orchard fruit just hinting at more exotic lime and peach. Very fresh, very linear on the palate, the salt and citrus drives this cleanly, a tangy finish, restrained and very European in style, and delicious. On sale at time of writing reduced to £13.95 at winedirect.co.uk