Introducing the new 2015 vintages of the iconic Helmsman, Deerstalkers and Brokenstone – as well as the show-stopping 2016 Riflemans Chardonnay.
The individual collection of awards for all four wines… is simply staggering!
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The top Hawkes Bay reds have been pushing up their prices the last couple of years, with your favourite $70 wines becoming $120 wines rather quickly. While we predicted it would happen, since the wines have long been under-priced in what is a global market, it doesn't make it any easier on the back pocket! One producer to buck the trend is Sacred Hill, whose benchmark Special Selection wines have not moved in price for several years – even on the back of exceptional reviews and quality from the 3 finest vintages in a row the region has ever experienced! These are arguably the finest quartet of prestige wines to come out of a single winery!
All four of the Special Selection wines we're offering today are among the finest examples in NZ, at any price. That fact has been proven time and again at blind tastings around the country and internationally, the most notable being when the 2006 Helmsman outshone the legendary Haut-Brion at a high-profile event in London (the latter circa 20 times the price per bottle). It has genuine age ability… the 1998 Helmsman in Jeff's private cellar is still drinking nicely. Due to a further 17-years of vine age, plus vastly increased experience with their terroir, these 2015 prestige Sacred Hill releases are significantly superior wines!!
The 2015 vintage was the third consecutive excellent vintage for Hawke's Bay winegrowers. Heat summation was right on the long-term average and January and February were very dry. When the rain finally did come, it was followed by cool, dry weather, which halted any negative effects on quality. The result is elegant wines that are very classic for Hawkes Bay with strong structure and cellaring potential.
Of note also is the 2016 Riflemans Chardonnay, which just keeps getting better when we thought it wasn't possible. Stunning generosity and a laser-like acidity yielding to a creamy day-long finish, it will drink well from day 1 but also cellar for a decade or more, for those who like a little age on their premium Chardonnay.
Allocations are small of these wines, and as mentioned above, the sharper prices compared to their more expensive contemporaries will ensure they sell out. They come with our highest recommendations and will make a fine addition to your cellar.