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Wineseeker Blog

Thursday, 15 September 2016 - 2:30pm by Katie Hutton

Hungary Day 1

The classic European wine countries dominate the global wine world- France, Italy, Spain, followed by Germany, Austria and Portugal.  Relatively unknown and underappreciated are the wines of Hungary.  
This week we have a focus on two of the best wine regions of Hungary - Villany in the South-West, and Tokaj in the North-East.  We will taste seven different wines, all of different styles.     All of the wines are on special this week and open for tasting so come in and try with us.


Monday, 29 August 2016 - 12:30pm by Michael Hutton

It is said that wine-food matching is a hard thing to get right - a subtle mix of chemistry and magic.  When it works just right it is truely sublime, making both the dish and the wine shine greater than they did on their own.  Some are easy and natural pairs- a crisp and zesty Sauvignon Blanc with a good piece of white fish, an earthy pinot with grilled portobello mushrooms.  Others defy natural logic- who would have thought that a strong sweet wine like Port would go with stinky savoury blue cheese?  

We're going to give it a bash in a regular blog session, contributing both our successes and failures.  I'm going to try some classic mixes and some more out of left field. If you have a style of dish or type of wine you'd like us to experiment with drop me a line!  

Monday, 1 August 2016 - 10:45am by Michael Hutton

The wines of South Africa are something of a rarity on NZ shelves, but with good and ever improving quality combined with great value for money they won't stay that way. 

The heart of the 'Saffa' wine industry lies in the Western Cape, with the regions of Stellenbosch and Swartland lying a stones throw from Capetown.  Winemaking here has a surprisingly long history - the first vines for wine being planted in 1652 by Jan van Riebeeck - for the purposes of supplying the Dutch East India Trading company enroute to the spice trade in the far east.  

Monday, 30 May 2016 - 1:30pm by Michael Hutton

Hong Kong hardly seems like the most common destination for wine scouting - unless you are heading to Vinexpo - a worldwide convention showcasing wines from all around the world.  Photo- Wan Chai waterfront- part of the expo centre is on the far left of this photo.  

Hong Kong is a city under constant construction- new highrises underway, new motorways and spectacular overpasses, repairs and renovation often completed with 15+ stories of bamboo scaffolding held together with cable ties.  Photo: No such concerns about earthquakes in HK when it comes to reclaimation - the harbour gets a little smaller each year.

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 - 5:45pm by Michael Hutton

It’s that time of year again, where the viticulturist’s job finishes and the winemakers being.  Harvest time in Martinborough has been keenly awaited after what has largely been an excellent growing season. 

Photo - Pinot Noir fruit on the vine at Palliser Estate. 

Our most important local grape of course is Pinot Noir – an early ripening variety compared to Cabernet or Riesling.  Weather conditions in Wellington have been incredible this year, but has it been the same ‘over the hill’?  Strictly by temperature it has been slightly above average with February being a standout month with long warm sunny spells, but more specifically it has been dry.  A slightly earlier harvest than usual was forecast, with some 20-30ml of rain falling a couple of days before most picking began.

Photo - February Temperatures for Martinborough

Sunday, 20 December 2015 - 12:45pm by Michael Hutton

Some new arrivals in store this week in the run up to Christmas, wines from Hungary.

A young Hungarian gentleman by the name of Miki dropped in to see us introducing a range of interesting Hungarian wines.  Up until now my sole tasting experience from Hungary has been the exceptionally sweet and delicious dessert wine 'Tokaji' but unfamiliar with the other wines from the region.  

Tuesday, 29 September 2015 - 10:45am by Michael Hutton

After multiple requests from our recent 'Islands of the Mediterranean' tasting here is my best recollection of how I made the tart:

Thursday, 17 September 2015 - 12:00pm by Michael Hutton

The cycle of renewal begins - Bud Burst has started in Martinborough, the indication that the vines are waking from their winter slumber and the delicate shoots start unfurling.  It's an important time for the vineyard, usually occuring when the average daily temperatures are above 10C.  It's a time for vigilance too, as this early in the season there is a danger of frost, and damage at this time of year can stunt the amount of fruit later in the season.  Cue the wind machines and smoke braziers last weekend to minimise the risk.  A few weeks from now these shoots will be rapidly growing up to 3cm a day.  

Thursday, 2 July 2015 - 10:30am by Katie Hutton

Western Australia is enormous - bigger than Texas enormous.  Bigger than Alaska.  Actually bigger than Texas and Alaska put together.  Most of WA is entirely unsuitable for winemaking however, either too hot, too arid, or too humid.  However down in the South Eastern corner, about 280km South of Perth is the Margaret River wine region.  Small by Australian standards, about 5,000 hectares (or roughly 5 times the size of the Martinborough & Wairarapa wine region).  It produces about 3% of Australian wine, but more than 20% of its awards - Margaret River is serious on quality.  

Monday, 22 June 2015 - 6:15pm by Katie Hutton

Winery of the Week - CHALK HILL

For this week's tastings we are hopping over the ditch to taste South Australia.  McLaren Vale is barely a few minutes drive South from central Adelaide in South Australia, and while it is very close to its' much larger neighbour Barossa it is a distinctly different region.  

We'll be tasting five different wines, the award winning Chalk Hill Shiraz, a Cabernet Franc blend, Shiraz Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, and finishing the week with a treat - their top end $100 Alpha Crucis Shiraz.  


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