Element - - Food - By Yvonne Lorkin

A cool, crisp Pinot Gris would com­ple­ment this dish nicely. But it shouldn’t be too fruity be­cause there are so many flavours al­ready hap­pen­ing on the plate, so I’d reach for a glass of Matawhero Gis­borne Pinot Gris 2011 ($25).

I love the aro­mas of quince paste, hints of wet stone and crushed oys­ter shells. In the mouth it’s richly flavoured, in­cred­i­bly tex­tu­ral and dry with fan­tas­tic per­sis­tence of flavour. Su­perb stuff!

Bill Ir­win es­tab­lished the vine­yards in 1968 while the Matawhero brand was set up by his son Den­nis in the 70s. Den­nis be­came one of New Zealand’s most flam­boy­ant wine in­dus­try char­ac­ters be­fore re­tir­ing from wine­mak­ing in 1999. Al­most a decade later Matawhero Es­tate was pur­chased by Kirsten and Richard Searle who, with their young fam­ily of three chil­dren un­der five, moved to Matawhero with a pri­or­ity list read­ing; 1) Fix the house, 2) re-es­tab­lish the vine­yard, then 3) Pro­duce and re-launch the wine. They’ve achieved all that and have adopted a min­i­mal-in­ter­ven­tion ap­proach to wine­mak­ing, us­ing nat­u­ral fer­ments where pos­si­ble and al­low­ing the flavours to come through in a pure, unadul­ter­ated fash­ion.

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