Cuisine Wine

NZ Bordeaux Blends Tasting results

08 June 2016 (Cuisine magazine Issue 177)

Hawke’s Bay rules the complex family of wines in this category, writes Ralph Kyte-Powell.

“Bordeaux blend” is a loose term that can mean a straight varietal wine, a cross-pollination of two varieties, or a multi-varietal blend of very complex make-up. The grape varieties involved are cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, malbec and petit verdot, all of which originate in the countryside of Bordeaux, on France’s Atlantic coast. The result is a group of wines with a distinct family resemblance, yet the ability to be incredibly complex and multi-faceted.

In New Zealand, the Bordeaux blend is at its best in Hawke’s Bay, and the region has a longer story of success with these grape varieties than any other in the country. In this Cuisine tasting, Hawke’s Bay wines dominated, with the excellent 2013 and 2014 vintages looking the goods.

Many of the wines tasted need bottle age to realise their potential, and this influenced the assessments of them, thus reducing the award tally. Of 80 wines tasted, a little over half (41) were awarded star ratings, and those wines showed admirable consistency and ripe appeal.

Top 5 NZ Bordeaux Blends

Babich The Patriarch 2013

Hawke’s Bay cabernet sauvignon blends rarely get better than this. Dense in colour, it has a captivating nose of blackcurrants, red fruits,
balanced sweet/smoky oak, and a hint of leafy austerity. In the mouth it’s ripe and intense, with complex flavours starting to develop ahead
of a lingering fragrant aftertaste. Superb New Zealand red.

| $70
→ more 1 View All Results in the Babich The Patriarch 2013 Tasting

Star ratings for this tasting

» How ratings work

  • Outstanding 7
  • Excellent 2
  • Very Good 8
  • Good 23
  • No Award 40
  • Total Entries 80