Featured Reviews

Elephant Hill 2017 Syrah Rosé and 2016 Chardonnay

18 October,2017
Elephant Hill was established by the Weiss family in 2003, and in the short time to now, it has become one of the most exciting and respected Hawke’s Bay wineries. With the coastal home Te Awanga vineyard supported by warmer inland vineyards in the Red Metals and Gimblett Gravels, the range of wines is quite complete, with quality shining through in all varieties. Most would agree that Chardonnay is the flagship white, and now, Syrah is the favoured red. Winemaker Steve Skinner gives considerable thought to the making of wines from these varieties. Here, I review the 2017 Syrah Rosé, the first Elephant Hill rosé made from this variety, and the 2016 Chardonnay. www.elephanthill.co.nz


Elephant Hill Hawke’s Bay Syrah Rosé 2017

Rose from New Zealand – Hawke’s Bay

Bright salmon-pink colour with some depth, lighter on the rim with slight purple hues. The nose is softly fresh and voluminous with good depth of watermelon, quince and cranberries with red florals, and a fine core of mouthwatering mineral notes. Dry to taste and medium-full bodied, the palate has a deep heart of watermelon, quince and cranberry fruit along with lifted red florals. The fruit is rich and mouthfilling and enlivened by bright, crisp, thirst-quenching acidity. The wine flows with some underlying power along a very fine-textured line, leading to an aromatic, lingering finish of red fruits and florals. This is a rich, mouthfilling dry rosé with flavours of watermelon, quince and cranberries, on a well-driven, crisp, mouthwatering palate of substance. Match with antipasto and tapas over the next 2 years. A blend of 97% Syrah and 3% Tempranillo, the fruit 42% Gimblett, 40% Bridge Pa and18% Te Awanga, WBP and cool-fermented in stainless-steel to 12.5% alc. and 3.5 g/L RS. 18.5-/20 Oct 2017 RRP $24.00

Elephant Hill Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2016

Chardonnay from New Zealand – Hawke’s Bay

Bright, pale straw-yellow colour with slight green hues, lighter on the edge. The nose is elegantly proportioned and fine in expression with good depth and taut intensity of white and yellow stonefruits and citrus fruit entwined with subtle creamy barrel-ferment and nutty oak aromas with nuances of flint. The componentry is harmoniously bound and the nose retains good freshness. Medium-full bodied, the palate has a finely presented, well-concentrated core of white and yellow stonefruits, citrus fruit and mealy notes, along with subtle creamy barrel-ferment and nutty elements unfolding a little flinty detail. The fruit intensity and richness is balanced by fresh acidity and the wine flows along a very fine, textural-threaded line, leading to a refreshing finish. This is an elegant but concentrated Chardonnay with intense and complex flavours of stonefruit and citrus fruit with meal, and nutty layers with flint suggestions, and a fresh palate. Serve with grilled nd roasted seafood, poultry and pork dishes over the next 4-5 years. Hand-picked fruit from the estate Te Awanga vineyard, WBP and fully indigenous yeast barrel-fermented to 13.7% alc., the wine aged 11 months on lees in 25% new oak barriques with no MLF. 18.5+/20 Oct 2017 RRP $32.00
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