The Season

The spring of 2009 was one of the warmest ever recorded so the vines got off to a good start with an early budburst. Late spring and early summer, however, were unseasonably cool and cloudy, sufficiently slowing the development of riesling to cause us concern. The skies then cleared and we had three to four months of unbroken sunshine. This enabled us to leave the fruit on the vine until it was fully physiologically ripe. Late in the season dewy mornings followed by fine days encouraged the development of noble botrytis.

The Vineyard and vines

The outcrop of land on which these were grown consists largely of weathered stones. Millions of years ago these were shorn from the high mountain peaks of the South Island’s Southern Alps by an ice-age glacier, which deposited them in selected sites in the Waipara Valley. The individual mineral rich terroir has helped shape this wine and our vines, which are up to about a quarter of a century in age and have had time to send their roots deep into this soil.

The Harvest and winemaking

We picked riesling from the same vines on multiple occasions over several weeks choosing only beautifully noble botrytic fruit. Further hand selection was done in the winery retaining only the best berries. These were gently pressed and a small amount of very rich, syrupy juice was obtained. It was allowed to settle and the clarified portion was fermented slowly at a low temperature to help retain its unique aromas and flavours.   The juice was so concentrated that when the fermentation stopped it still had a rich, natural sweetness. It was made in the style of an Alsatian Selection des Grains Nobles or a German trockenbeerenauslese.

The wine

On release the wine has a bright lemon gold hue. It is packed with impressions of yellow fleshed peaches, apricots, guavas, lychees, fresh figs and honeycomb. The palate is rich, luscious and unctuous but there is a lively minerality and acidity which course through the wine and prevent it from being cloying. There is a long lingering aftertaste.

Download Tasting Notes


. . impressive purity and a lingering finish that refuses to quit . ."
- Bob Campbell MW,
“…Very rich and opulent, this is nectar-like with an unctuous and rounded mouthfeel. Decadent flavours of citrus fruits, marmalade, honey and toffee unfold in gentle waves, and the wine coats the palate. The fruit and botrytis show great presence and intensity. Lifted floral and VA elements cut the richness with fine, underlying acidity lending drive. The wine flows seamlessly to a soft, lush, very long, lingering finish. This is a rich and unctuous botrytised Riesling.
- Raymond Chan,


TOP TIP Golden in colour and honeyed on the nose this is classical dessert wine. The concentrated fruit in the palate shows lemon, citrus and a nudge of marmalade. Unctuous and everlasting. Yum.
-, NZ
This was the panel’s favourite wine in the New Release tasting. It just strikes that perfect balance between fruit sweetness and acidity making it the perfect dessert wine. Yum!
- Wine NZ magazine
“… has a profoundly scented nose of acacia honey, apricot preserves and orange marmalade with touches of frangipani and dried mango. Fully sweet, rich and viscous, it gives a satisfying tropical fruit and honey layers with a good line of enlivening acid and a long finish.”
- Lisa Perrotti-Brown, MW - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, USA
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Pegasus Bay

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Off Licence.
Licence Holder:Dr I Donaldson T/A:Pegasus Bay Winery.
Licence no:057/OFF/001/2015 Exp:22/12/2017