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Waiheke Island Syrah A Stand Out In Tasting

Waiheke Island Syrah A Stand Out In Cuisine NZ Reds Tasting

Cuisine magazine has just announced the results of its annual NZ Reds* tasting. This tasting is one of the largest each year and includes the increasingly fashionable Syrah variety and Bordeaux-style reds from Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Cabernet Franc.

Passage Rock, a small Waiheke Island producer, took the two top awards for Syrah with its Passage Rock Syrah 2005 and Passage Rock Reserve Syrah 2005.

Owner of Passage Rock, David Evans, attributes their success to terroir and an ideal climate. Their seven-hectare estate vineyard has a red-clay soil base and a very sunny site sheltered by low hills to the north, east and west. Sunshine reflected off the sea also adds warmth during the growing season. In the summer temperatures often reach 30°C, but autumn mist from the sea reduces night temperatures.

Northland’s Omata Estate Reserve Syrah 2004 was also rated in the top five, indicating that this variety also has an exciting future in the upper North Island.

New Zealand’s largest Syrah plantings are in the Hawke’s Bay. Two wines from this region, Te Awa Syrah 2004 and Bridge Pa Vineyard Louis Syrah 2004 were also amongst the top five Syrah of the tasting.

The top Cabernet Sauvignon-based wine of the tasting was Craggy Range The Quarry 2004 and the top Merlot was Thornbury Hawke’s Bay Merlot 2004.

Taste these New Zealand Reds at selected fine-wine stores throughout the country. Tasting dates and contact details are listed below.

* Cuisine NZ Reds tasting does not include Pinot Noir tasting which is featured in the November 2006 issue of Cuisine.


First Glass Wines & Spirits

Wed 6 Sept 7pm

La Barrique

Wed 30 August 7pm

Glengarry Victoria Park

Sat 2 Sept 10am-4pm (free)

Waiheke Wine Centre

Thurs 7 Sept 7pm

Hamilton Napier
Hamilton Wine Company

Upstairs at The Bank, Victoria St,

Tues 5 Sept 7pm


Fri 8 Sept 4pm-7pm

Wellington Nelson
Glengarry Thorndon Quay

Sat 2 Sept 10am-4pm (free)

Casa del Vino

Wed 30 August 6pm

Christchurch Arrowtown
Vino Fino

Tues 5 Sept 6pm

Allan Hamilton Wine Cellars

Thurs 14 Sept 5pm-7pm (free)

Wanaka Fine Wines

Tues 12 Sept 6pm

On sale from 28 August, the September issue of Cuisine retails at $8.95 inc. GST and is available from all supermarkets and good bookstores throughout New Zealand.


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