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Featured Reviews

Archangel Central Otago 2018 ‘Lace’ Rosé and Pinot Gris, and 2015 Pinot Noir

09 August,2018

Mary and Ian Zurakowski established Archangel Wines in 2003, planting 23 ha of vines in Queensberry, just north of Lake Dunstan in Central Otago. The name Archangel refers to the fascinating past of the founders through the Second World War and after. The vineyard is planted to Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Riesling and is under the care of Gary Ford of Vinwise, who is guiding it towards organic certification, all things going well, in March 2019. The wines are made by Pete Bartle of VinPro, and these wines show the quality of the fruit as well as the standard of the winemaking. Mary and Ian’s son Zenek has taken on much of the running of the operation now and already there have been new developments such as the opening of a cellar door, and the introduction of a rosé wine to the brand. Here, I review the new release 2018 ‘Lace’ Rosé and Pinot Gris, and 2015 Pinot Noir.


Archangel ‘Lace’ Central Otago Pinot Noir Rosé 2018

Rose from New Zealand – Otago


Bright, very pale pink with slight purple hues, lighter edged. The nose is elegantly proportioned with tight, but fragrant fruit aromas of cherries and strawberries and cream, along with subtle red floral notes and a suggestion of confectionary with fermentation esters. This has a degree of finesse and beauty. Dryish to taste and medium-bodied, the palate has a fresh, fine, taut core with good intensity of red cherry fruit with red florals and background notes of strawberries and cream. Some lifted ferment esters is apparent. The fruit flows along a fine-textured phenolic line which provides a drying balance to the fruit sweetness. Fresh acidity enlivens the mouthfeel and the wine carries to a thirst-quenching finish. This is a taut, dry rosé with cherry and floral fruit and a fine-textured phenolic line with enlivening acidity. Serve as an aperitif and with canapés, or Asian fare over the next 2 years. Hand-picked clone 777 fruit, WBP direct to tank and cool-fermented in stainless-steel to 13.0% alc. and 5.2 g/L RS. 17.5+/20 Aug 2018 RRP $27.00

Archangel Central Otago Pinot Gris 2018

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Otago


Bright, pale straw-yellow, near colourless on the rim. The nose is softly fresh and initially restrained in expression, but revealing white stonefruits, subtle notes of exotic florals and pear fruit with aeration. This grows in volume in the glass. Dry to taste and medium-full bodied, the palate has clarity with a finely concentrated heart with a rounded fruit mouthfeel showing fresh white and yellow stonefruits enhanced by exotic florals and pear notes. Some ferment esters unfold. This has good palate presence, and the wine is carried along a fine-textured line with some underlying alcoholic power, leading to an aromatic finish. This is a finely concentrated dry Pinot Gris with stonefruit, exotic floral and pear flavours, plenty of palate presence and some alcoholic drive. Serve with Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine over the next 3+ years. Hand-picked Berrysmith clone fruit fermented in stainless-steel to 14.1% alc. and 4.4 g/L RS. 600 cases made. 18.0-/20 Aug 2018 RRP $25.00

Archangel Central Otago Pinot Noir 2015

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Otago


Moderately dark ruby-red colour with some depth, lighter on the edge. The nose is elegantly concentrated with a firm core of black and dark-red cherry and berry fruit entwined with dark herbs, violet florals, unfolding plum and liquorice suggestions. The aromatics grow in intensity with aeration. Medium-full bodied, the palate has sweetly rich fruit flavours of dark-red and black cherry and berries, along with notes of plums, liquorice and spices. The fruit is fine in concentration forming an elegant dry core to balance the fruit sweetness. The palate possesses fine-grained, flowery tannins that lend plenty of structure, with balanced acid freshness. The wine flows with good energy to a lingering finish of black fruits. This is a taut and well-concentrated, elegant Pinot Noir with black cherry and berry fruits along with plum and spice notes, on a finely extracted palate with plenty of structure. Match with lamb, beef and venison, or semi-hard cheeses over the next 6-8+ years. Hand-picked fruit, clones 5, 777, 113, 115 and Abel, fully destemmed and fermented to 13.3% alc., the wine aged 12 months in 28% new French oak. 18.5/20 Aug 2018 RRP $37.00

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