Tuesday, November 21, 2017

#FirstSipNZ with a Trio from Villa Maria Estate Winery

We have found over the years that Villa Maria Estate Winery is a reliable option for affordable New Zealand wine and a recent #FirstSipNZ tasting showcased three of these popular wines. The Villa Maria 2017 Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough ($14) is made from grapes sourced from the Awatere Valley and Wairau Valley. The former provides the powerful lemongrass aroma whereas the later citrus and tropical notes. Combine these with a creamy smooth body and fresh acids and this wine doesn't last long. The Villa Maria 2016 Private Bin Chardonnay, East Coast ($15) derives from the east coast of the north island such as Hawkes Bay and Gisborne. Although the grapes were fermented in stainless steel there is considerable depth and creaminess (not butter) due to partial malolactic and maturation with regular yeast stirring. The result is a pleasant lemon aroma, creamy citrus palate, and refreshing tail. Like the Sauvignon Blanc, the Villa Maria 2016 Private Bin Pinot Noir, Marlborough ($18) is also sourced from the Awatere and Wairau Valleys. This is a very interesting Pinot, the aroma includes a slightly spicy vege mushroom sensation, whereas the light body contains smoked cherries, and the finish a smooth juicy dried cherry flavor. A house favorite. Cheers.

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