Featured Reviews




Sherwood Stoney Range and the new ‘Reserve’ Releases

24 October,2017
Dayne and Jill Sherwood of Sherwood Estate recently celebrated 30 years of winegrowing. Since their start in 1987, they have grown the business to being one of the country’s larger, independent, family-owned wineries. The estate owns over 80 ha of vineyards, five in the home base of Waipara in North Canterbury, and three in Marlborough. Dayne and Jill are still involved in every aspect of the day-to-day running, and their younger son Marc, 25 years old, is completing his viticultural degree at Lincoln University as his father did 25 years ago. Petter Evans, an industry veteran, is the chief winemaker, and is assisted by Ian Whiteaker and Chris Pattinson. The vineyards are overseen by Peter Adcock-White and Mike Price. Around half of the production is exported to 26 different markets.

As part of the 30 year celebration, Sherwood Estate has introduced a ‘Reserve’ tier to their very successful ‘Stoney Range’ brand. It is envisaged that the Stoney Range ‘Reserve’ wines will take the place of the Sherwood ‘Signature’ brand as the quality has the same aspiration level. This will consolidate the branding. Here, I review a selection of new releases in the Sherwood ‘Stoney Range’ tier, four Stoney Range ‘Reserve’ wines and a 2015 Pinot Noir from the limited production Sherwood ‘Waipara Collection’. www.sherwoodestate.co.nz

FEATURED WINES IN THIS REVIEW



Sherwood Estate ‘Stoney Range’ Waipara Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

16.5+/20
Bright, even straw-yellow colour with light golden tints. The nose is fresh with a well-packed core of gooseberry fruit, white stonefruits and herbs. The aromatics are expressed gently. Dry to taste and light-medium bodied, the palate has soft flavours of gooseberries with notes of fresh herbs. The mouthfeel is refreshing and lively, unfolding aromatic stonefruit and floral elements. The wine flows along a soft-textured phenolic line with lacy acidity, leading to a gently refreshing finish. This is a softly fresh Sauvignon Blanc with light gooseberry flavours along with floral lift, and a gently-textured palate. Serve as an aperitif, and with salads and vegetables over the next 2 years. Fruit from the ‘Church Rd’, ‘Stirling’ and ‘Georges Rd’ vineyards, fermented to 12.0% alc. and 4.0 g/L RS. 16.5+/20 Oct 2017 RRP $16.99

Sherwood Estate ‘Stoney Range’ Waipara Valley Pinot Gris 2017

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

17/20
Bright, even straw-yellow colour, with light golden hues. This has a soft and gently full nose with good depth of savoury yellow stonefruits, with yellow florals and honied elements, unfolding nutty nuances. Dryish to taste and medium-bodied, the palate has a good core of savoury yellow stonefruits with subtle, lift florals along with honied and nutty elements. The palate has richness and is balanced by light, phenolic textures lending dryness, and fresh acidity. The flavours recede as the wine carries to a light finish. This is a dryish Pinot Gris with a good heart of savoury yellow stonefruits, florals honey and nutty notes on a rich, light-textured palate. Match with poultry and pork dishes over the next 2-3 yeas. Pinot Gris fruit from the ‘Pilgrim’. ‘Terraces’, ‘Georges Rd’ and ‘Stirling’ vineyards fermented to 13.0% alc. and 5.0 g/L RS, the wine having a small portion of Riesling. 17.0/20 Oct 2017 RRP $16.99

Sherwood Estate ‘Stoney Range’ Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2017

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

16.5-/20
Bright, light ruby-red colour, with pale purple hues on the edge. The nose is fresh with light red cherry aromas and some cooler-spectrum herbal nuances, unveiling red florals that grow in depth with aeration. Medium-bodied, the palate has up-front, cooler fruit flavours of red cherries entwined with fresh herbs and red florals. The palate is fresh with brisk acidity, with light, supple tannin extraction underlining the fruit. The flavours form a finely concentrated core and line, carrying to a lingering cherry and herb-fruited finish. This is a cooler-spectrum Pinot Noir with bright cherry fruit and herb notes on a zesty palate with a light core, but good length. Serve with antipasto, or with tuna, salmon and poultry over the next 3 years. Fruit from the ‘Pilgrim’, ‘Glasnevin’, ‘Church Rd’, ‘Stirling’ and ‘Terraces’ vineyards, fermented to 12.0% alc. 16.5-/20 Oct 2017 RRP $18.99

Stoney Range ‘Reserve’ Waipara Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

17.5/20
Bright, even straw-yellow colour. The nose is very fresh and finely concentrated with aromas of white stonefruits and gooseberries, along with fresh herbs and thirst-quenching mineral notes. The nose shows with elegance and finesse. Dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate possesses refreshing, zesty and bright aromatic fruit flavours of gooseberries and fresh herbs. The fruit and mouthfeel are enlivened by crisp, mouthwatering acidity. The wine flows with good energy along a fine line, leading to an elegant, lingering finish of fragrant gooseberry fruit. This is a fresh and lively, elegant and aromatic gooseberry-fruited Sauvignon Blanc with a mouthwatering palate. Match with Pacific Rim fare over the next 2 years. Fruit from the ‘Georges Rd’, ‘Stirling’ and ‘Pilgrim’ vineyards, cool-fermented to 12.0% alc., and 2.0 g/L RS, the wine aged 2 months on lees. 17.5/20 Oct 2017 RRP $24.99

Stoney Range ‘Reserve’ Waipara Valley Pinot Gris 2017

Pinot Gris from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

18/20
Bright straw-yellow colour with light gold hues and some depth. The nose is fragrant with voluminous aromas of bright and lifted exotic florals with pears and savoury yellow stonefruits, unfolding nutty and mineral nuances. Off-dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate has softly rich and vibrant fruit flavours of exotic florals and stonefruits, entwined with pear and honied elements. The fruit flavours form a rounded but concentrated core with fresh lacy acidity enlivening the mouthfeel. The wine flows with good poise and energy to a delicate, lingering, aromatic finish. This is a soft, rich, vibrant and bright fruited off-dry Pinot Gris with exotic stonefruit flavours and honied notes on a fresh, lively palate. Match with Middle Easter and Asian cuisine over the next 3+ years. Fruit from the ’Pilgrim’ vineyard, undergoing whole bunch fermentation, extended skin contact and barrel-fermentation techniques to 13.0% alc. and 6.0 g/L RS. 18.0/20 Oct 2017 RRP $22.49

Stoney Range ‘Reserve’ Waipara Valley Chardonnay 2016

Chardonnay from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

17.5/20
Bright, light golden yellow colour with some depth, lighter on the edge. The nose is tightly bound with taut aromas of yellow stonefruits, along with subtle nutty notes and hints of oxidative complexities. The nose unveils creamy barrel-ferment elements with aeration. Medium-full bodied, the palate has a moderately concentrated palate with full flavours of ripe yellow stonefruits with citrus fruit notes, entwined with nutty oak and creamy barrel-ferment flavours. The mouthfeel shows richness, balanced by fresh, lacy acidity, and the wine flows smoothly to a lingering finish of stonefruits and nuts. This is a moderately concentrated Chardonnay with stonefruit and nutty flavours, a rich palate and smooth line. This has Burgundian character. Match with poultry and pork dishes over the next 4 years. Fruit from the ‘Stirling’ and ‘Glasnevin’ vineyards, indigenous yeast barrel-fermented to 13.5% alc., the wine aged 12 months on lees with approx. 20% MLF.. 17.5/20 Oct 2017 RRP $22.49

Stoney Range ‘Reserve’ Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2016

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

18/20
Even, light ruby-red colour, a little paler on the rim. This has an elegantly concentrated nose with aromas of dark-red cherry and berry fruit, along with dark-red florals and nuances of dark herbs. Medium-bodied, the palate has rich and sweet flavours of dark-red cherry and berry fruit lifted bt dark-red florals. The lush fruit builds with dark plum notes unfolding to form a rounded, well-packed heart with supple, fine-grained tannin structure and integrated acidity. The flavours carry with good drive to a rich, lingering finish of dark-red berry fruits. This is a sweetly rich and luscious Pinot Noir with roundness and deep, ripe cherry and berry fruit with fine tannin structure. Match with duck, pork and beef dishes over the next 5+ years. Hand-picked fruit from the company’s six Waipara Valley sites, fully destemmed and indigenous yeast fermented to 13.5% alc., the wine aged 9 months in 20% new oak barrels. 18.0/20 Oct 2017 RRP $26.99

Sherwood Estate ‘Waipara Collection’ ‘Nor’wester’ Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2015

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara

18.5/20
Moderately dark ruby-red colour with some depth, lighter on the edge. The nose is fragrant with aromas of bright, fresh and ripe dark-red berry fruits with nuances of plums, along with violet florals and aromatic, nutty oak. Medium-full bodied, the palate is rich and well-weighty with deep fruit flavours of ripe dark-red berry fruit and plums, lifted by violet florals and complexed by nutty oak. The palate unfolds dark herb and spice detail. The fruit richness is balanced by fine-grained tannins providing plenty of structure, and integrated, lacy acidity lends energy and drive. The wine carries to a lingering, rich, dark berry and plum-fruited finish with spice nuances. This is a rich, ripe fruited Pinot Noir with dark berry fruit with plums, florals and spices on a fine-structured palate. Match with beef, lamb and venison dishes over the next 6-7+ years. Fruit from the ‘Stirling’, ‘Church Rd’ and ‘Terrace’ vineyards, fermented with 5% whole bunches to 13.5% alc., the wine spending 25 days on skins and aged 12 months in 40% new French oak barriques. 18.5/20 Oct 2017 RRP $28.50
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