‚ÄėDry River‚Äô in Hawke’s Bay!
New Zealand‚Äôs most exciting new range of wines.
Hi to all our valued cellar and selected premium wine customers, and wishing you a happy new year.
In our first Cellar Journal of 2011 we‚Äôre proud to offer New Zealand‚Äôs most exciting new range of wines.
A collaboration between two of New Zealand‚Äôs most iconic wineries; Dry River and Te Awa, Kidnapper Cliffs wines are an essential addition to the cellar and drinking pleasure of any serious collector and lover of New Zealand wines.
Dry River is, in the words of Bob Campbell MW in Decanter magazine; ‚ÄĚArguably New Zealand‚Äôs most iconic winery.‚ÄĚ The wines are made by founder Dr. Neil McCallum who Bob describes as having ‚Äúan almost fanatical approach to winemaking… producing a range of wines that are consistently among the country‚Äôs best.‚ÄĚ¬†¬†
Te Awa are among Jancis Robinson MW‚Äôs twelve favourite Hawkes Bay producers. Their 2007 Hawkes Bay Syrah recently earned the highest-equal score ever for a New Zealand Syrah, alongside Craggy Range‚Äôs 2007 La Sol in Wine Spectator. This is testimony to the incredible fruit from their 50-hectare Gimblett Gravels vineyard and the talents of their winemaker Ant Mackenzie who Jancis Robinson MW describes as an ‚Äúextremely effective‚ÄĚ winemaker.
So if a New Zealand wine lover were to dream up their ultimate collectors wine, it would be hard to do better than marrying the best 17 hectares of 20+ year old vine Te Awa fruit to Dry River‚Äôs brilliant, terroir-focused approach to fine wine production with the single-minded goal of creating low-yield, niche wines structured for long-term cellaring.
The partnership is the brainchild of American Julian Robertson who owns both wineries, as well as two of New Zealand‚Äôs finest Golf Courses; Kauri Cliffs in the Far North and Cape Kidnappers in Hawkes Bay. He applies the same fanatical approach to quality in all of his ventures.
Dr. Neil McCallum summarises his new wines by saying ‚ÄúWe are excited about the possibilities and we hope that those truly interested in wine will take the time to discover why we are so excited. We are not here to replicate what has gone before ‚Äď expect surprises, expect fine wine.‚ÄĚ
So, as you can imagine I tasted these wines with the highest expectations, and the Dry River-style flanged top bottles with wax disks only added to the anticipation. In fact, the wines over-delivered; I was not prepared for just how fine, sophisticated and elegant these wines are. Clearly French-inspired, they represent a serious step in New Zealand‚Äôs fine wine evolution.¬†
Dry River wines have always been painfully difficult to obtain, as Bob Campbell MW says ‚ÄúIf demand is any measure, Dry River is New Zealand‚Äôs most successful winery. Apart from a relatively small export allocation, all Dry River wines are sold by mail order within days of release.‚ÄĚ¬†
Likewise, the availability of these exceptional wines is tiny. Our allocation, while representing a generous proportion of the total production, is significantly less than we would like to meet anticipated demand.¬† So we‚Äôre offering them on a first-in, first-served basis just as the Dry River wines were in the winery‚Äôs infancy.¬†
‚ÄúExpect Kidnapper wines to be as sought after, as rare, as collectible and potentially offer the same investment return Dry River does.‚ÄĚ Jeff