Dry River took its simple but evocative name from an historic sheep station that used to exist a few kilometres away on the dry, wandering river plains between Martinborough and lake Wairarapa. Planted by the visionary Neil and Dawn McCallum in 1979 - a good few years ahead of ‘old hand’ Alan Limmer in Gimblett Gravels - Dry River were not only ahead of the curve but can these days speak meaningfully about the old vine presence and impact on the estate’s production. With an approach and culture that feels quite European, Dry River are interested in sustainability and minimal intervention - especially in the winery - but always with a reasoned eye for what is pragmatic and particular to their terroir. Eschewing the Kiwi obsession with varietal flavour-making and wines to drink now, Dry River focus their impressive resources on the simple but complex task of producing and preserving true physiological ripeness, in this way making wines of extreme quality and balance that are often approachable young but reach their true expression after some years in cellar.
What The Critics Say
Winemaker notes on current 2015 vintage
"For Dry River the 2015 vintage was very challenging. Since our vineyards are dry-farmed, with no irrigation to mitigate these events and help promote growth, we decided to reduce our potential yield by 70 percent! The result however is a deep, darkly coloured wine from very ripe fruit. It can almost be likened to a cool climate Australian Shiraz. One might even be fooled to detect a hint of Eucalypt. There is a distinct mix of fruitful and savoury components in this wine. The nose is opulent and warm, where it shows cassis, plums and dark cherries, with mocha, cacao powder and coffee beans. The ripe, dense fruit and the structure of the palate draws the attention immediately. Plush sweet fruit and liquorice allow for a very open and hospitable entrance and provides a broad mouthfeel. The fluffy and powdery tannins, together with the acidity keep the wine compact and salivating, creating a tighter, funnel shaped finish to the wine. We see extraordinary evolution of Syrah in the cellar over many years. Do not hesitate to store this for seven to ten years before opening."
98/100 Wine Orbit, Sam Kim
"This is pristine, elegant and refined, yet has awesome power and substance. Fabulous aromas of Black Dori plum, blueberry and violet with nuances of mixed spice and almond on the nose. The palate is concentrated and focused, and exhibits glorious fruit purity, backed by layers of silky texture and abundance of polished tannins. It is stunning and beautiful with fabulous ripeness and depth of flavour, and makes you wonder how good it will be in ten years. At its best: 2020 to 2033. $64.00. www.dryriver.co.nz. Sept 2015."
19.5-/20 Raymond Chan
Very full, near impenetrable black-red colour with youthful purple hues. This has a concentrated and intensely penetrating, aromatic bouquet of dark-red and black berried fruits melded with dark red and violet florals, subtle black pepper layers, smoke and spice elements. This is strikingly perfumed and refined in expression. Medium-bodied, the palate is rich and elegantly concentrated with sweet, ripe flavours of black and dark red berry fruits interwoven with an array of florals and complexed by spice and pepper elements. The fruit is supported by very fine, flowery tannins that balance the fruit sweetness, providing fine textures and structure. Soft, ripe integrated acidity enhances the freshness and primary expression, and the wine carries to a very long and sustained finish of spices, pepper and florals. This is a beautifully refined, concentrated and aromatic Syrah with fine-grained structure. Match with lamb, beef, venison and Middle Eastern cuisine over the next 8-10+ years. 100% Syrah from the ‘Lovat’ vineyard, fully destemmed and fermented to 12.0% alc., the wine spending 13 days on skins and aged 12 months in 20% new large format oak. 19.5-/20 Sep 2015 RRP $64.00
We deliver throughout New Zealand and to some locations overseas. Our deliveries are made by trusted third party carriers. For further details on prices and delivery options please go to DELIVERY INFORMATION section of our site.
If for any reason you are not entirely happy with your order or you suspect that they may be affected by a quality issue, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will remedy the problem straight away. Contact us on 0800 422 767.