Tasting The Wines of Lime Rock at 4th Wall with Rosie & Rodger

Another fabulous tasting at the 4th Wall Wine Tasters club in New Plymouth – A great turnout of about 30 wine lovers came to spend the evening with Rosie Butler, Wine Maker and Rodger Tynan, Vit-Ecologist from Lime Rock Wines in the Hawkes Bay.

We tasted the eight wines from the Lime Rock range tonight, Rosie and Rodger providing lots of information about their wine-making history, experiences, philosophy, aspects of the vineyard and about each wine as we tasted through them.

Lime rock wines were grown on north facing limestone slopes, east coast New Zealand with Vineyard management based on Ecological principles thus Rodger a Vit-ecologist rather than a Viticulturist – prefers minimal disturbance to the soil / sustainability – no cultivation practices in the vineyard. read more here: https://www.limerock.co.nz/page/minimal-disturbance/

All wines are Single Vineyard but from many aspects of the vineyard, mostly on own rooted vines-not grafted onto root-stock. You can read all about the geology, soils, micro-climate here: https://www.limerock.co.nz/page/vineyard/


Rosie and Rodger’s basic philosophy is to allow the wines to express the environment that the grapes are grown in. The LIME ROCK vineyard site, with its limestone, altitude, north facing slopes and variations in terrain is unique. They chose grape varieties that suited the place or turangawaewae.

It was Rodger the Vit-Ecologist’s challenge to produce the best flavours and then the Winemaker’s challenge to capture those flavours in the wines. So they picked on sweetness, balance, flavour, colour, condition of the grapes and vines and, of course always checked the weather.

They observe the basic good principles of wine-making, keeping the flavours in the juice and then fermenting with carefully controlled conditions. Then they maintain these flavours in the wine and enhance them; in the case of Pinot Noir they use the very best of French oak barriques. Nothing too complicated. This lets you know what flavours the Central Hawke’s Bay limestone land can produce.

The Wines Tasted – JB’s Notes

We started with a 2021 Pinot Noir Rose, RRP:$24 light strawberries and cream, cherries, fine tannins, just off dry.

The 2020 Chardonnay Hill of Good Health RRP:$39 was great too, struck match, butterscotch, stone-fruit, fine oak, long dry finish.

Next up was an aged 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, RRP:$22 – lemon / lime citrus acidity, stony minerality, crunchy.

The Kota Pinot Noir from 2016 RRP:$28 was a lighter style with cherry, plum a nice acidity & fine tannins, long dry finish.

The Classic Pinot Noir 2014 RRP:$39 was aging well with plum, cherry, spice fine silky tannins finishing dry.

The White Knuckle Pinot Noir 2013 RRP:$60 from a very steep slope in the vineyard was pale ruby coloured, fragrant with berry, cherry and savoury herbal notes. firm tannins and still a bright acidity.

Into the 2013 Merlot RRP:$30 now, again with some good age – savoury nose , leather, tobacco, dark cherry, earthy, a weighty wine with grippy tannins / acidity / textured oak influence.

We finished with a special treat – 2016 Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc RRP:$28 375ml – pale gold, fragrant nose citrus, honey, apricot, Juicy but even with at 110 gms/rs still had a tart juicy finish. All delicious beautifully made wines.

The venue at 4th Wall Theatre is excellent and the platters from Sugar Shack Platters to accompany the wines are yummy too.

The Future

What’s very sad is that the Vineyard has now been sold and ALL the vines have been pulled out and replaced with grazing.

Rosie and Rodger still have a good stock of wines from many vintages and are focusing their efforts on sales & wine tastings, but these won’t last forever. Don’t miss out on a part of Hawke’s Bay’s Wine History.

To buy wines from Lime Rock visit the website and be sure to stock up. https://www.limerock.co.nz/

To find out more about 4th Wall Theatre visit:

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