Featured Reviews

Main Divide 2016 Pinot Gris, and 2015 Riesling and Pinot Noir

03 October,2018

The second label, or in reality the sister label to Pegasus Bay in North Canterbury, Main Divide has developed a style and life of its own for the Donaldson family. Although price doesn’t mean everything, the Main Divide wines are more accessible than the Pegasus Bay in that regard. The fruit sources are usually contracted fruit rather than pure estate fruit, and though primarily from North Canterbury, can come from other regions. The winemaking is of the same standard as Pegasus Bay, but the wines have a more up-front fruit expression. Often the Main Divide wines can push the style envelope that the Pegasus Bay wines do not, which are more ‘traditional’ in my view. That makes the Main Divide wines pretty exciting in any wine enthusiasts’ book. Here, I review the new release 2015 Riesling, 2016 Pinot Gris and 2015 Pinot Noir. www.maindivide.com


Main Divide North Canterbury Riesling 2015

Riesling from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara


Brilliant light golden-yellow colour with some depth and pale green hues, lighter on the rim. The nose is softly full with aromas of ripe citrus fruits and a complex amalgam of honey musk, unfolding a little toastiness and some savoury stonefruit elements. Medium-dry to medium in taste and medium-bodied, the palate has a rich and sweetly succulent core with an array of citrus fruits entwined with honey, musk, toast and earthy stonefruits. The palate unfolds exotic tropical fruits and spice, and shows some unctuousness, balanced by a little phenolic texture and grip. The wine has soft acidity in the background and flows with good linearity to a rich, honied finish. This is a rich and succulent medium Riesling with a complex core of citrus fruits, honey, musk and toast, on a light phenolic-textured line. ,atch with Asian cuisine over the next 3-4 years. North Canterbury fruit cool-fermented to 12.5% alc. and 24 g/L RS, TA 6.5 g/L and pH 3.39. 17.5/20 Oct 2018 RRP $20.99

Main Divide North Canterbury Pinot Gris 2016

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara


Bright, light golden yellow with some depth, paler on the rim. The nose is rounded with a concentrated core of ripe yellow stonefruits along with notes of honeysuckle, exotic yellow florals, musk and minerals. The aromatics possess depth and grow in volume in the glass. Medium-dry to taste and medium-full bodied, the palate has a fulsome core with rounded and deep flavours of ripe yellow stonefruits and honeysuckle, with subtle notes of exotic florals and a musky overlay. Spice notes emerge, and the palate is underlined by some power and drive. The mouthfeel is soft and rounded, the acidity in the background, and the wine carries to an unctuous finish. This is a fulsome and flavoursome medium-dry Pinot Gris with ripe stonefruit, honey, floral and musk unfolding spice and some alcoholic power. Fruit harvested in stages in April, with a latter portion including some botrytis, and fermented in stainless-steel to 13.0% alc. and 9.65 g/L RS, the wine aged on lees. 17.5+/20 Oct 2018 RRP $20.99

Main Divide North Canterbury Pinot Noir 2015

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara


Moderately deep ruby-red colour, a little lighter n the rim. The nose is elegantly concentrated with a firm heart of ripe, dark-red berry fruit along with subtle notes of dark herbs, some whole bunch stalk perfumes with a little earthiness and minerals, unfolding red floral nuances. Medium-full bodied, the palate has rich and sweet flavours of ripe dark-red berry fruit along with dark plums and an amalgam of dark herbs, whole bunch stalk notes and lifted red florals. The fruit forms a moderately concentrated core with grainy tannin grip and balanced acidity providing energy. As the wine flows, some savoury earthiness emerges to add complexity, and the wine carries to a finely concentrated finish. This is a rich and sweet-fruited Pinot Noir with dark-red berry fruit along with plum, herb and stalk detail, red florals and earth on a structured palate. Match with wild duck and pork, and game meat over the next 4-5 years. North Canterbury fruit indigenous yeast fermented with 25% whole bunches to 13.5% alc., the wine aged 22 months in 15% new French oak barriques. 17.5+/20 Oct 2018 RRP $24.99

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