Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Sacred Hill wine tasting

Our final wine club tasting event for this year was hosted by Sacred Hill. This winery is around 30 years old and based in Hawke's Bay with vineyards also in Marlborough and the Matakana Coast near Auckland. Grapes such as chardonnay are picked overnight in Marlborough, then shipped north to the winery in a cool truck where it is processed within eight hours of being picked.

The tasting was hosted by a sales rep and a very bored territory manager who looked like she'd rather be anywhere but there. Never mind. It was still good to taste six new wines from Sacred Hill and Ti Point, even if the session was unnecessarily drawn out. I can't help but wonder how their sales figures compared to those from other wine tasting evenings we've been to.

Onto the wine. The chardonnay and a sauvignon blanc made it onto the yes list. Much fuss was made of a special white Merlot, something we were keen to try only to hear that they didn't actually have that sample for us after all. Maybe next time?

2014 Ti Point Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. This sav was fruity and smooth, well balanced and not too light with low acidity. It got better with every sip until it made it all the way onto the yes list.

2014 Sacred Hill Reserve Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. Described as a Halo quality wine in grocery store packaging, the reserve label sav was more up front and fruity than its Ti Point counterpart. Although it's probably a more refined drop, it was only a maybe for us.

2014 Sacred Hill Reserve Hawke's Bay Chardonnay. Chardonnay has been a bit out of fashion lately. This one had a smooth finish and the level of French oak was neither unpleasant nor overbearing, making this a surprise yes.

2014 Ti Point Matakana Coast Ruby Rose. Not awful, but not something we'd buy a bottle of. Meh.

2014 Sacred Hill Reserve Marlborough Pinot Noir. A dusky red colour and a heavy oak finish. No.

2013 Ti Point Merlot Cabernet Franc. Nope. I'm still not a heavy red wine drinker.

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