Featured Reviews

Paddy Borthwick 2018 Rosé, Riesling, Pinot Gris and ‘Falloon’ Pinot Noir

27 December,2018

Scion of the famous Borthwick Meat Business family which has Te Whanga Farm in the Wairarapa, Paddy Borthwick established 27 ha Borthwick Vineyard on old river terraces overlooking the Ruamahanga River after extensive winemaking experience overseas and in Marlborough. Paddy has near 40 vintages under his belt, and fashions classical Gladstone wines of high quality, of which most is exported, but in demand domestically. Arguably the most fascinating wines are the ‘Left Hand’ and ‘Right Hand’ Pinot Noirs which represent the outcomes of his and his assistant winemaker’s working with the same fruit, making wines that are stylistically representative of their different actions, innate approaches and philosophies. Paddy has as his assistant Briony Carnachan, began her first vintage there in 2018, but has several vintages experience in the Wairarapa and around the world before. Paddy considers her the archetype ‘Left Hand’ Pinot Noir winemaker – logical, creative and precise, as different to the intuitive style of the ‘Right Hand’ Pinot Noir. Here, I review the 2018 Pinot Rosé, Riesling, Pinot Gris and ‘Falloon Block’ Pinot Noir which Paddy credits Briony with plenty of influence in the final wines. Paddy sees the 2018s as from a very good vintage that will improve in the bottle. www.borthwick.co.nz


Paddy Borthwick Wairarapa Pinot Rosé 2018

Rose from New Zealand – Wairarapa & Wellington


Bright, pale salmon-pink colour with a hint of peach and some depth, lighter on the rim. The nose is fresh and elegantly packed with aromas of strawberries, pomegranate, redcurrants and quince with subtle amalgam of red florals and mouthwatering minerals. This has good clarity and intensity. Dryish to taste and medium-bodied, the palate has bright and aromatic strawberry and cream fruit with notes of red florals and pomegranate with a little confectionary lift. The palate has light phenolic textures providing a guiding line with fresh acidity lending vibrancy, enhancing the fruit richness. The wine carries to a lingering, fragrant juicy finish with confectionary elements. This is a bright, aromatic dryish rosé with strawberries and cream, pomegranate and floral notes along with confectionary on a refreshing palate with some textures. Serve with antipasto and tapas over the next 2 years. 100% Pinot Noir, saignee, given 18 hours skin contact and fermented in stainless-steel to 13.8% alc. and 2.6 g/L RS. 18.0+/20 Dec 2018 RRP $22.00

Paddy Borthwick Wairarapa Riesling 2018

Riesling from New Zealand – Wairarapa & Wellington


Bright, even, light straw-yellow colour, a little paler edged. The nose is elegant in proportion with intense and finely concentrated, penetrating aromas of exotic florals, tangerines and an array of citrus fruit with hints of honeysuckle and suggestions of musk, unfolding some mineral notes. Dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate has concentrated aromatic flavours of exotic florals, lime and tangerines, along with honeysuckle notes and a little musk, forming a tight palate core with some fruit extract and phenolic grip. The acidity is fresh an balanced and the wine has excellent linearity, leading to a long, textured finish of limes and florals. This is a finely concentrated dry Riesling with exotic floral and citrus fruit notes along with honey and musk notes on a light-textured palate. Match with Thai, Vietnamese and Japanese cuisine over the next 4-5 years. Riesling fruit cool-fermented in stainless-steel to 13.0% alc. and 3.1 g/L RS, TA 7.5 g/L and pH 3.17. 18.5/20 Dec 2018 RRP $22.00

Paddy Borthwick Wairarapa Pinot Gris 2018

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Wairarapa & Wellington


Bright, light straw-yellow colour with some depth, pale edged. The nose is soft in expression and has some vinous presence, but the fruit is light, infolding taut and tightly bound aromas of white stonefruits melded with nutty elements and honied nuances. This is clean, pure and refreshing. Dryish to taste and medium-bodied, the palate has good weight and presence showing white and yellow stonefruits, along with notes of honey, herbs and nutty nuances. Soft textures give the mouthfeel some grip along with some underlying alcohol providing drive. The acidity is balanced and the wine carries to an elegant, nuanced finish. This dry Pinot Gris has weight and vinosity, and restrained fruit expression, showing stonefruits, honey and herbs on a fine-textured palate. Serve with poultry and pork over the next 3+ years. Pinot Gris fruit fermented in tank with 20% by indigenous yeasts in seasoned oak to 13.3% alc. and 1.8 g/L RS, the wine aged on lees. 17.5/20 Dec 2018 RRP $24.00

Paddy Borthwick ‘Falloon Block’ Wairapapa Pinot Noir 2018

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Wairarapa & Wellington


Even, light ruby-red colour with a little depth and slight purple hues on the rim. The nose is softly fragrant with gentle aromas of red cherry and berry fruit entwined with aromatic red florals, melded with soft notes of fresh herbs. This is elegant and has delicacy of fruit expression. Medium-full bodied, the palate has good depth and intensity with elegantly concentrated flavours of dark-red cherry and berry fruit with lifted fragrant florals along with soft notes of fresh herbs. The palate has grainy tannin extraction in support with lacy acidity lending vitality. The wine is carried by the grippy structure to a dry, grainy finish. This is a grainy-textured Pinot Noir with fragrant cherry and berry fruit with fragrant florals. Match with tuna and salmon, poultry and pork over the next 4-5 years. A mix of clones from the ‘Falloon’ block, Bideford. Vines 10-20 y.o., fully destemmed and fermented to 13.5% alc., 45% of the wine aged 7 months in 20% new oak. 17.5-/20 Dec 2018 RRP $24.00

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