NZ syrah, Aus­tralian shi­raz and NZ Bordeaux blends

Cuisine - - CONTENTS -

NEW ZEALAND SYRAH con­tin­ues to evolve. Once a cu­rios­ity, now it’s be­com­ing main­stream, pre­sent­ing a real choice for Kiwi wine con­sumers look­ing for a tasty al­ter­na­tive to a nor­mal diet of pinot noir, Aussie shi­raz, or reds in the mer­lot/caber­net fam­ily.

As also seen in our eval­u­a­tion of Bordeaux blends in this is­sue, Hawke’s Bay has fur­ther con­sol­i­dated its po­si­tion as New Zealand’s prime source of great syrah in this tast­ing. Of 20 wines scored at four stars and higher, all but one were from Hawke’s Bay, the other wine cham­pi­oning Wai­heke Is­land as a source of top syrah. Vin­tage con­di­tions are also an im­por­tant fac­tor in the qual­ity equa­tion, with the ma­jor­ity of wines cur­rently in the mar­ket­place re­flect­ing the im­pact of three suc­ces­sive ex­cel­lent vin­tages in 2013, 2014 and 2015.

The evo­lu­tion of NZ syrah isn’t cen­tred only on qual­ity in the bot­tle; value for money is get­ting bet­ter all the time too. No wine il­lus­trates the value fac­tor bet­ter than the top wine of this Cui­sine syrah tast­ing. At $25, Villa Maria Cel­lar Se­lec­tion Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2015 makes a great in­tro­duc­tion to Hawke’s Bay syrah, and all our Best Buys from this tast­ing send the same mes­sage – Kiwi syrah should be on the shop­ping lists of all wine lovers.

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