Winemaker "We hand pick the fruit from Matthews Lane vineyard ensuring each parcel of fruit is in pristine condition. After a yeast starter the juice rests on yeast lees for 11 months in new 1,000L German Oak Fuder Barrels. The use of Fuder barrels in this way ensures our Single Vineyard white wines develop a greater complexity and refinement because oak doesn’t dominate. The ratio of wine in contact with the barrel surface is less than smaller barrels so oak pick up is less. The staves of Fuder barrels are thicker which means the temperature of ferment tends to be warmer and we find the fruit characters gain greater depth and complexity."
What a great vintage on the back of the 98 (Decanter) Point 2016... Cool fermentation with cultured yeast in stainless steel tanks was utilised to retain the fresh varietal aromatics. This was balanced by a portion of the fruit subjected to traditional winemaking practices; handpicked, whole bunch pressed and fermented in seasoned oak barrels, adding texture and length to the wine. The result is a hand-crafted wine combining the bright fresh fruit characters with an underlying minerality and fine structure.
17 Points - Tim Jackson MW (JancisRobinson.com) "Very pale lemon. Delicate, nutty, boxwood, subtle spice, with lime and lemongrass fruit. Brisk and lively. Textured palate, with lime, spice and a hint of pea pod. Attractive in its subtlety, and long too."
94 Points - Sam Kim (The Wine Orbit) "From their estate vineyard in the Southern Valleys, the wine offers fabulous fruit intensity as well as silky mouthfeel. The beautifully lifted bouquet shows lemon peel, feijoa, passionfruit and lime zest aromas, followed by a concentrated palate that is focused and linear. The wine delivers wonderful vibrancy and bright acidity, leading to a superbly long, fine finish. A stylish rendition filled with attractive flavours. At its best: now to 2020. (Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2017). "
Finalist, FINE WINES OF NEW ZEALAND. 2019
18.5/20 Raymond Chan "Very pale straw colour. The nose is soft with ripe, passionfruity aromas and gentle density. This has lovely harmony. Medium-bodied, the ripe passionfruit flavours are softly presented, and the palate is composed of fine phenolic textures with bright acidity. The integration, balance and togetherness is gorgeous. Luc Cowley reported that 2018 wasn’t an easy vintage, but lessons learnt from 2017 were invaluable." Tasted August 2018
Bob Campbell "Bright, tangy sauvignon blanc with gooseberry, lime, grapefruit, pineapple and a suggestion of passionfruit flavours. A punchy, assertive and flavoursome wine." Tasted October, 2018
Cameron Douglas "Seductive and alluring bouquet of SB with softer fruit spice layers woven between suggestions of lemon and sweet grapefruit, apple, mineral and fresh lychee. Crisp, dry, packed with flavour and texture. Notable acidity well balanced against the ripeness of fruit and gentle fruit spice moments. Lengthy and quite complex finish. Drink now through 2022." Tasted February, 2019
Five Stars, Michael Cooper "Estate-grown on the south side of the Wairau Valley, on a site where the region’s first wines were made in the 1870s, this youthful wine was mostly handled in tanks; 5% was fermented in old French oak casks. Mouthfilling (13% alc/vol) and dry, with excellent weight and depth of ripely herbaceous, grapefruit/lime flavours, it’s a powerful, finely poised wine with a long finish." Tasted November, 2018.
97 Points - Bob Campbell MW
From a low-yielding vineyard in the Waihopai Valley with clay-based soils and 17 year-old vines. 50% whole-bunches in the fermentation. Evocatively perfumed wine with savoury, fresh herb, violet, red rose, cherry and berry flavours supported by classy spicy oak. Dense and seamless with an impressively lengthy finish. Delicious wine.
96+ points Stuart McCloskey “A fabulous mature nose of undergrowth, earth and balanced beautifully with a dash of spicy red fruits and rosehip, which could easily be interpreted as a high-class Burgundy. There’s lots to discover on the palate – time in the glass / decanter reveals a real depth and complexity rarely found at this price level. The palate is subtle, silky with a lovely sweet entry. Layers of fruit continue to build leading into blood orange, cranberry and a touch of warm spice. A beautiful wine with perfectly judged acidity and ultra-fine tannins. This is a model of pure sensitivity –simply, a faultless joy. Served using a Zalto Burgundy glass. Drinking window: Now to 2023”
95 Points - Mike Bennie "One of the top chardonnay wines in New Zealand, generally speaking. Indeed, Dog Point in general excels at its quarries. This one is for the flint and mineral fans. Strong slate and graphite scents, lemon and apple underlying. The palate is racy, whipcracked with citrus/white flesh stone fruit, charged with that flinty mineral thing going on. Sheesh, it's got some velocity too. In its style, it's done brilliantly. A fancy racing car of a wine. Cellar long too."
17 Points - Tim Jackson MW (JancisRobinson.com) "Pale-mid lemon. Celery seed, toasted hazelnut and quite integral, struck match. Orchard fruit. Bright rather than brisk acidity, with hazelnut, toast and struck match. Creamy-spicy finish. Complex and layered, needing time for the reduction to fall back more."
97+ Points - Stuart McCloskey "What a welcome back after a three-vintage absence (for me, not the wine!). Waves of plums, mulberries, black cherries and hints of blood orange wash effortlessly across your palate. There is an intense core of rich dark fruits perfectly framed by fine tannins which is impossible not to admire. Certainly, an intriguing Pinot Noir which straddles styles and certainly would not be out of place with some of Sonoma’s ‘top’ Pinot Noirs. Utterly joyful and quite honestly soars above many of its New Zealand peers. Served in a Zalto Burgundy glass but I do feel a little unkind with my score – Perhaps another point (98+) if I had the patience to decant which I would highly recommend."
96 Points - Bob Campbell "Fragrant, aromatic pinot noir with seductive floral, cherry and subtle spicy flavours. Delicately succulent wine that has clearly been made with a light touch but has impressive power and a lengthy finish. This wine has the X-factor - every sip is even better than the last."
95 Points - Stuart McCloskey "Hand-picked grapes from eight of Dog Point own vineyards within the Wairau Valley. The fruit is whole bunch pressed, cold settled before fermentation and 2-3 months aging in stainless steel tanks. A portion of this wine is fermented using indigenous yeast and bottled without fining. A wonderfully deep and mineral nose with white and yellow stone fruits with a tinge of herbs. The palate is positively electric with stone fruits and minerals. Extremely pure, shows finesse and elegance as well as a touch of sweetness, but the overall balance is perfect. A wine which straddles New Zealand and the Loire, which is most pleasing as many Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc are too overtly pungent and unappealing. An exceptional Sauvignon Blanc for the price and an utter joy when the sun shines… "
17 Points - Jancis Robinson "Very racy, alluring, complex nose with some reductive struck-match character. Rather splits the difference between Marlborough and Sancerre. Creamy undertow with exciting top notes. Extraordinary tension on the palate. Dry but not drying finish. Long. Very accomplished and intense."