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Featured Reviews

Nockie’s Palette 2016 Chardonnay, and GeorgeTown 2017 Rosé and 2015 Pinot Noir

04 May,2018

Nockie’s Palette is the wine venture of Australian painter, art entrepreneur and philanthropist Michael Nock who is resident in Hong Kong. Michael has a great passion for wine and has engaged John Duval (formerly head winemaker of Penfolds) to make his Nockie’s Palette Barossa Valley Shiraz for him since 2009. Michael developed an interest in New Zealand wine and in 2016 invited Tim Turvey of Clearview Estate in Hawke’s Bay to make a Nockie’s Palette Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay. While looking for a Central Otago home base, the GeorgeTown Vineyard at the end of Kawarau Gorge came up for sale in 2017, and he purchased it. This was the close-planted vineyard established by Gary Andrus in 2002. Along with it has come existing stocks of GeorgeTown Vineyard wine. Moving forward, Michael has engaged Pete Bartle of VinPro to make his Central Otago wine, and the label will be changed to Nockie’s Palette GeorgeTown Vineyard. Here, I review the 2016 Nockie’s Palette Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay, and the GeorgeTown Vineyard Central Otago 2017 Rosé and 2015 Pinot Noir.


Nockie’s Palette Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2016

Chardonnay from New Zealand – Hawke’s Bay


Full, golden-yellow colour with lemon hues, a little lighter on the rim. The nose is full, broad and up-front with voluminous aromas of ripe tropical and citrus fruit melded with nutty and toasty oak and an amalgam of creamy barrel-ferment and buttery MLF elements. Full-bodied, the palate is bold with powerful and mouthfilling flavours of ripe tropical and citrus fruit entwined with a layering of creamy barrel-ferment, and nutty, high-toast oak, along with buttery MLF Richness. The flavours are fulsome and underlined by some alcohol drive. The wine is lusciously rich and flows along a fine-textured line with softly integrated acidity adding to the roundness, The wine carries to a nutty, toasty, oak dominant finish. This is a fulsome, broad and mouthfilling traditional Chardonnay with ripe tropical fruit, toasty oak and buttery flavours. Match with roasted pork over the next 4 years. Hand-picked Te Awanga fruit, WBP and barrel-fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 10 months in 50% new oak with 100% MLF. 100 cases made. Winemaker: Tim Turvey. 17.5+/20 May 2018 RRP $36.00

GeorgeTown Vineyard Central Otago Pinot Noir Rosé 2017

Rose from New Zealand – Otago


Bright, light candyfloss pink with slight purple hues, paler edged. The nose is tightly bound wit fresh aromas of cherries and strawberries along with soft red florals, subtle nutty nuances and thirst-quenching minerals, unfolding hints of confectionary. Dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate is vibrant and refreshing with bright cherry and strawberry fruit flavours along with nuts, confectionary and mouthwatering minerals. The mouthfeel is enlivened by crisp acidity and the wine flows along a very fine-textured line, leading to a lingering finish of florals and cherries. This is a crisp and refreshing, vibrant cherry and strawberry fruited dry rosé. Serve as an aperitif, with canapés and antipasto over the next 2 years. Pinot Noir fruit given overnight skin contact and fermented in tank and barrel to 13.0% alc. and 5.8 g/L RS, the wine aged 2 months in seasoned oak. 205 dozen made. Winemaker: Lucie Lawrence. 18.0+/20 May 2018 RRP $29.00

GeorgeTown Vineyard Central Otago Pinot Noir 2015

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Otago


Moderately deep, light ruby-red colour, paler on the rim with slight garnet hues. The nose is elegant and slender in proportion with a fine core of dark-red cherry and berry fruit entwined with an amalgam of fresh and dried herbs, red florals, nuances of liquorice and nutty oak. Medium-full bodied, the palate is fine in presentation with a tightly bound heart of dark-red cherry and berry fruit with savoury red florals, subtle notes of herbs and nutty oak. The fruit is gently sweet and rich, and enlivened by balanced acidity, and the wine is supported by fine-grained, powdery tannin extraction. The flavours carry to a light, nuanced finish. This is an elegant, finely concentrated Pinot Noir with red cherry and berry flavours, along with herb notes on a fine-textured palate. Match with poultry and pork over the next 4-5 years. Fruit from the ‘GeorgeTown’ vineyard, predominantly clones 667, 777 and 5, fully destemmed and fermented to 13.5% alc., the wine aged 11 months in 20% new oak. 185 cases made. Winemaker: Brendan Seal. 17.5/20 May 2018 RRP $35.00

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