WINE COCKTAILS CREATE A STIR
So you thought cocktail mixing was a happygo-lucky affair combining a splash of that with a squelch of this.
Certainly not, insists Greg Rowdon, chief winemaker at Matua on the North Island of New Zealand, one of the country’s most distinguished wineries and the first to produce sauvignon blanc.
To Rowdon, cocktails are more like scientific experiments, with very particular flavours and tannins coming together in glorious collision with spirits and juices.
Rowdon, 37, is an honours graduate in winemaking. For his master’s he wrote his thesis on “the evolution of volatile aromatics during micro-oxygenation”.
He has really started something in New Zealand recently by reinventing the fruity sangria with an added dash of pinot noir. And there is a twist of kiwifruit, of course.
The so-called Sangritua is not just a pretty colour but a refreshing drink, with the pinot tannins providing a lovely “grippy” mouth texture.
Rowdon also likes the acidic, tropical fruit flavours of sauvignon blanc to make drinks such as the “Matooler” ( see below left).
He tells me his mother urged him to study winemaking when he was in high school.
“I’ve loved every minute of it,” he says.
MATOOLER (MATUA COOLER)
30ml Matua Regional Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2015 30ml gin 30ml apple juice 30ml pineapple juice 30ml lemon juice 10ml sugar syrup Shake all ingredients in a Boston glass and then pour over ice into a wine glass. Garnish with a slice of orange and mint.
MARITZ (MATUA SPRITZ)
30ml Matua Lands and Legends Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2015 30ml Campari 45ml orange juice 15ml sugar syrup 15ml passionfruit pulp Shake all ingredients (except passionfruit pulp) in a Boston glass , strain into a tall glass full of ice, add passionfruit over top to finish and garnish with a slice or two of lime.