17.5 Points – Jancis Robinson
Bright ruby. Tarry nose. Sinewy texture à la North Rhône. Very polished. I would find it impossible to guess this was not a northern Rhône if it were served blind. Wonderfully fresh, succulent and satisfying.
Zalto Denk-Art Bordeaux Glass
For weightier style reds we recommend the Zalto Bordeaux glass, probably our most widely used glass when tasting in house, this glass is great for many different wines. The large bowl helping aerate and soften tannins whilst accentuating the wines depth and concentration. The Bordeaux glass is the ideal choice for Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Zinfandel, Bordeaux or Rhone style blends and many other red wines. Surprisingly, it is also the glass of choice for oaked Chardonnay as well, the shape of the bowl accentuating the balance of ripe fruits and oak.
The name Dry River has historical significance as one of the earliest sheep stations in Wairarapa, dating back to 1877. The winery was established in 1979 by Dr Neil and Dawn McCallum who sold it to Julien Robertson and Reg Oliver in 2003, Neil remaining as the chief winemaker until he retired in 2011. The vineyards are planted on the Martinborough township border on very arid soils of free draining gravel, a site that had been identified by a friend and soil scientist Dr Derek Milne as having a 30 years record for the lowest rainfall on New Zealand’s north island. This area was limited to a 5 Kilometre radius with the deep, free draining, gravel soils being restricted to an even smaller part of this. By 1986, there were five wineries operating within this tiny, crescent shaped area of land which lay along the edge of the river terrace formed by the Ruamahunga and the Huangarua rivers around 20,000 years ago. The five wineries decided they would like to define and demarcate the terroir with an expectation that the wines produced from here would show similarities in character and a uniqueness that reflects the terroir. From 1986, wines made from within region were given a seal of origin by the Martinborough Winemakers Association and in 1991 was given its own appellation, The Martinborough Terrace Appellation to distinguish it from the other terroirs that were being explored.
"At the Southern tip of the North Island and a sub-region of Wairarapa is Martinborough. Known for it’s boutique style of winery, Martinborough’s production is dominated by Pinot Noir characterised by its balance between elegance and intensity"
At the Southern tip of the North Island and a sub-region of Wairarapa is Martinborough. Known for it’s boutique style of winery, Martinborough’s production is dominated by Pinot Noir characterised by its balance between elegance and intensity, evident in the wines of Devotus. As well as Pinot Noir, plantings of several other varieties that reach their full potential in Martinborough’s climate are also found including Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay, Viognier and Syrah, producers like Dry River are a great example of the quality these varieties can reach. Martinborough has a semi-maritime climate with coastal breezes coming from the east and shelter within the rain shadow of the Tararua Ranges resulting in a cool, dry climate.
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