Christine Marsiglio MW, Freddy Bulmer and Roger Jones tasted 60 wines with 9 Outstanding and 32 Highly recommended.
New Zealand reds beyond Pinot Noir: Panel tasting scores
60 wines tasted
Highly recommended 32
Entry criteria: producers and UK agents were invited to submit their latest-release still red wines made from any varietal or blend except those including Pinot Noir, from any region around New Zealand.
New Zealand’s reputation in the wine world is often dominated first by its pungent Sauvignon Blancs, followed by its elegant Pinot Noirs, yet this tasting underlined the brilliance of a category for which the nation deserves to be better celebrated. Red grapes in New Zealand that are not Pinot Noir represent less than 5% of all plantings (New Zealand Winegrowers, 2022).
However, the wines we tasted here performed exceptionally well, with an astounding 15% rated as Outstanding.
Scroll down to see tasting notes and scores from the New Zealand reds beyond Pinot Noir panel tasting
‘The Syrahs from Hawke’s Bay are very good,’ said Freddy Bulmer. ‘Perhaps this could be the future of the region rather than Bordeaux varieties?’ This sentiment was reflected in the results, with most of the top-scoring Syrahs emerging from either Waiheke or Hawke’s Bay, although no consistent superiority was detected from the latter’s famed Gimblett Gravels sub-region.