Winter wine to put a bit of spring in your step

July 31, 2023
2 mins read

Witchdoctor wine guru PHIL PARKER finds some wines to cheer us up as we try to escape the clutches of late winter blues.

Okay – here we go folks. Spring is almost upon us, yet as I write from the Auckland mancave, the outdoor temperatures are hovering around 12 C and we have intermittent grey, gloomy wet days interspersed with winter sun and blue skies and…

But hey – wine! Good friends and winter food beckon. Cheers.

Giesen ‘The August’ Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2021 $40
Oak barrel fermented, and lees aged, this is a crisp and elegant take on Marlborough sav. Medium acids and a deceptive 13% alcohol. Subtle flavours of fresh black currant, gooseberry, green tomato, and a hint of fresh-cut herbs.
Available: Glengarry

Bogle Clarksburg Chenin Blanc 2021 $30
Another winner from California’s Bogle label. Flavours of spiced apple crumble, pink guava, clover honey, fresh-cut pineapple and poached pear. Kind of like a muscular Vouvray Chenin blanc. Tangy and complex.
Available: Dhall & Nash, Pt Chev Organic Wines,

Clayvin Single Vineyard Marlborough Chardonnay 2017 $53
Elegant and suitably mature as a 6-year-old chardonnay. Medium-bodied, biscuity and creamy, with toasted almond, grapefruit, lemon citrus and ripe nectarine. Crisp dry, lengthy yeasty finish.
Available: Glengarry, Caro’s

Francis Coppola Sofia Monterey County Rosé 2020 $45
Lightly blush pink in an elegant bottle. Restrained nose with a hint of toffee apple, but opens up with delicate raspberry coulis, strawberry and layers of red berry fruits in a bone-dry style.
Available: Dhall & Nash, Fine O Wine stores,


Would you like to support our mission to bring intelligence, insight and great writing to entertainment journalism? Help to pay for the coffee that keeps our brains working and fingers typing just for you. Witchdoctor, entertainment for grownups. Riveting writing on music, tech, hi-fi, music, film, TV and other cool stuff. Your one-off (or monthly) $5 or $10 donation will support and help us keep producing quality content. It’s really easy to donate, just click the ‘Become a supporter’ button below.


Clayvin Single Vineyard Marlborough Pinot Noir 2019 $57
A premium Giesen brand from low-cropping vines. Soft and savoury, medium-bodied style. Tamarillo, black cherry, plum and earthy savoury mushroom with a dash of smoky lapsang souchong tea.
Available: Caro’s,

Ara Resolute Organic Marlborough Pinot Noir 2021 $35
Vegan, and BioGro certified. Lean and elegant. Savoury dominant and dry, with soy and mushroom. Cranberry fruit and liquorice, plum and cigar.

Bogle Clarksburg Pinot Noir 2021 $29
Medium-bodied in classic Burgundian style. Dark berries, mocha coffee notes, with a nudge of umami savoury. Medium acids and tannins. Dry finish.
Available: Dhall & Nash, Pt Chev Organic Wines, Fine O Wines,

Giesen Ridge Block Single Vineyard Marlborough Pinot Noir 2017 $56
Multi-awarded. Simply gorgeous. Classic Burgundian medium-bodied style. Ripe, fruity and generous. Hints of cigar, spiced plum, ripe black cherry, black tea, mocha and boysenberry. Available:

Francis Coppola Director’s Cut Dry Creek Valley Sonoma Zinfandel 2019 $56
Big, bold and fabulous. What one would expect from a Californian zinfandel. Especially from the director of The Godfather. Intense cassis, spiced plum, ripe black cherry, dark chocolate, fruitcake, stewed prune, and a lengthy tannic finish. 15.5% alcohol.
Available: Dhall & Nash,

Francis Coppola Director’s Cut Alexander Valley Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 $56
Full-bodied and ripe at 14.5%. Typical cab flavours of cassis, black olive, juicy black summer berry fruits, Ghana dark chocolate, and plum pudding. Lengthy, dusty tannic finish.
Available: Dhall & Nash

Avatar photo

Originally a physiotherapist, Phil's fascination with the fermented grape juice led to the launch of his wine tour company Auckland Fine Wine & Food Tours at the turn of the century. A seasoned and well-respected wine writer, Phil's oenophilia led to the publication of his wine region guide to New Zealand, The Mad Keen Wine Buff's Road Trip (Random House).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Give a little to support Witchdoctor's quest to save high quality independent journalism. It's easy and painless! Just donate $5 or $10 to our PressPatron account by clicking on the button below.

Witchdoctor straight to your inbox every 2nd week


Advance Paris - Designed with French flair. Amplifiers, Streamers, CD players and more
Previous Story

1001 Albums You Must Die Before You Hear #76: Day Above Ground ‘s Asian Girlz

Next Story

These JBL headphones offer the ultimate in adaptability

Latest from Food & Drink

Last of the fab summer wine

Witchdoctor's wine guru PHIL PARKER has a selection this month that will take you through the last flush of summer drinking.
Go toTop