Sacred Hill Hawke’s Bay Merlot/Cabernet Sauvignon
This ‘orange label’ red is a consistently good buy. Based principally on Merlot and French oak-matured, it’s still fresh and youthful, but already delicious. Full-coloured and mouthfilling, it is vibrantly fruity, with a strong surge of ripe blackcurrant, plum and spice flavours, hints of herbs and dark chocolate, and a rich, smooth finish. Best drinking 2017+.
Akarua Bannockburn Central Otago Pinot Noir 2014
Estate-grown, hand-picked from 17-year-old vines and matured in French oak barriques, this deep ruby red has an enticingly fragrant bouquet. Generous, vibrantly fruity and supple, it has fresh, concentrated, well-ripened cherry, plum, spice and dried herb flavours, showing excellent complexity, and a finely poised, lasting finish. Lovely now, it will also reward cellaring.