Rockburn "The Art" Central Otago Pinot Noir 2010, $80
Deep and brooding in the glass, it oozes sweet black tea, black cherry and spice. In the mouth it reveals a peacock's tail of flavours redolent of dried herbs, succulent plum and cocoa characters. It's a masculine yet elegant wine with real finesse, tension and a smoky, seductive length. I'd love to try this again in a couple of years. www.rockburn.co.nz
Nautilus Four Barriques Marlborough Pinot Noir 2009, $85
I love the lift of Chinese five spice, black cherry, red rose, ripe rhubarb and charred chestnuts on the nose. It is succulent and juicy but carries density, weight and a serious presence in the mouth. The fruit is ripe, mature even, but edged with smoke and savoury, muscular elements. I imagine if they ever bottle Robert Downey Jr, this is what it'd taste like. www.nautilusestate.com
Wild River Dry Pinot Gris 2011, $14.99
Made by Mt Brown Vineyards in Waipara, this is a crunchy, dry white with clean pear- and apple-skin characters and some interesting spicy flavours and a mineral-driven finish.
Available from www.finewinedelivery.co.nz