It was my personal tasting highlight in recent months - a huge coup pulled off by FWD Co. Wine Tasting Manager Anto Coates in bringing together 11 Gimblett Gravels winemakers and 40 of their much vaunted 2014 Bordeaux blends and Syrahs under one roof at our Constellation Drive and Lunn Ave SuperStores over two nights. 70+ red wine lovers had a fabulous time at Constellation Drive on Wednesday and Anto reported a huge buzz in the room around the quality of 2014 Gimblett Gravels reds generally. I attended the Lunn Ave evening and can echo Anto's take on the previous night – the excitement in the room was palpable.
Tasting so many truly delicious wines from a single vintage across price points from $14.99 to $80/bottle was telling. And to get alongside icon Hawkes Bay winemakers like Gordon Russell - Esk Valley, John Hancock - Trinity Hill, Tony Bish - Scared Hill and many others was hugely appreciated by the 100 or so red wine lovers. Finally I tasted every wine in the room and was enthralled with the opulence, stylish structures and early drinkability of 2014 as a vintage from Gimblett Gravels. Something more remarkable than that… I have never before in 19-years since beginning FWD Co, tasted 40 wines (of which our panel were yet to taste circa 50% of) together where every one of them would pass the stringent tasting standards set by FWD Co tasting panel. 2014 Gimblett Gravels reds are a must for red wine lovers and their quality/value relationship is outstanding! Jeff