Wines from north of the Kapiti Coast you say? Don’t scoff until you’ve tried these… Yes there is a very well established winery up the west coast of the North Island in a little place called Ohau where you wouldn’t expect to find wine, let alone wines of this quality – but there is and it’s called Ohau Wines.
“Barry Clevely, Dave Munro and Hallam Cresswell began planning a subdivision on a likely looking river terrace when local viticulturist Kate Gibbs persuaded them to combine the housing development with a serious vineyard and new vineyards at Ohau became a reality.”
With the assistance of Kate and Tim Gibbs and Winemaker, Jane Cooper they have established Ohau Wines in New Zealand’s newest wine-growing region at Ohau, just north of the Kapiti Coast in the lower North Island with 20 Hectares of Vineyards with room to grow further up the valley.
They have 3 grape varieties planted – Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir and base their portfolio around two labels; Woven Stone and Ohau Gravels. Here are my notes on the six wines submitted and tasted over the last week or so!
Ohau Wines Magenta Rose 2011
This is a light pink blush in colour, with raspberries and floral notes on the nose, fresh crisp red berry fruits on the palate, with nice acidity and a little sweetness on the finish – chilled slightly is a nice summer lunch-time quaffer. 79/100
12 % Alc, 11 gms r/s. RRP $18.00,
Woven Stone Pinot Gris 2011
Lovely green-gold in the glass, a concentrated, sweet fruit nose with rich stone-fruits & honey, leading into lovely soft acidity / minerality, nice succulent fruit, with a wee bit of spice on the finish. 85/100
13.3% Alc, 12.1 gms r/s RRP $18.00
Woven Stone Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Bright pale straw with fresh tropical notes, rather than grassy herbals in the nose, citrus, limes and green apples on the palate, lovely acidity with more sweet citrus and pip fruit/apple lingering for ages. 87/100
12.3% Alc, 6.9 gms r/s RRP $18.00
Woven Stone Pinot Noir 2011
A medium bricky, cherry-red coloured, pale at the rim, nice summer berries and a little oak & spice in the nose, a lighter bodied style of Pinot with soft tannins and just slight acidity remaining, but some good fruit flavours coming through into a textured finish. 83/100
13.5% Alc, RRP $22.00
Ohau Gravels Sauvignon Blanc 2011
ZING! – Shiny lemon-lime, green pepper, limes and tart apples on the nose, really clean and juicy on the palate with zingy great acidity leading into a lovely limey textured mineral finish that makes you pucker up for more – in a nice refreshing way! 89/100
13.1 Alc, Bone Dry! RRP $22.00
Ohau Gravels Pinot Gris 2011
JUICY! – Bright gold in the glass with peaches, pear and a sweet floral nose, tropical fruit, pears and that “pear skin” texture on the palate, lovely viscosity – mouth feel, succulent sweet fruit finish with a hint of spice… great Asian food match. 90/100
12.8% Alc, 8.9 gms r/s $24.00
Well there you go – I’d recommend that you should try some if not all of these wines if you get the opportunity – Glenys and I have enjoyed sitting, tasting and thinking about these unique wines, being from a very new wine region. To find out more about the vineyards, wines and the people behind them, visit their Website like their Facebook Page or follow them on Twitter. Cheers, JB