Joelle Thomson

Wine writer and award winning wine author

What I am drinking, reading and savouring each week


Rock on Rockburn new releases

Rockburn takes its name from the rugged, rock strewn landscape of Central Otago and has two vineyards, one on the Gibbston Back Road in Gibbston Valley, the other at Parkburn in the Cromwell Basin which is home to its winery at Ripponvale. 

The Rockburn Stables Cellar Door and tasting room is situated in the Gibbston Valley in Coal Pit Road and this winery is a specialist of white wines as well as Pinot Noir; the leading light of most Central Otago wineries. Rockburn also produces Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Riesling, Rosé and an outstandingly complex Fumé Blanc. 


2023 Rockburn Central Otago Pinot Gris 2023 RRP $28

Central Otago is best known for warming, beautiful expressions of Pinot Noir but the perennially popular Pinot Gris also thrives in the deep south, retaining its fresh acid structure in the cool climate. This wine is totally dry and tastes it, with body enhanced by a portion of the wine being aged in older French oak to build texture and create a plush, medium bodied wine. White stone fruit flavours and light touch of aromatic spice add to its lively refreshing appeal. Enjoy with seafood or any time on a sunny day, year round. Drink now and over the next three to five years. RS 3.1 grams: dry. 


2023 Rockburn Central Otago Pinot Noir RRP $49

We can thank Mother Nature and the 2023 vintage in Central Otago for this rounded, full bodied and youthfully pretty fruit forward expression of Pinot Noir from Rockburn Wines. It’s a blend of grapes grown on two vineyards; Parkburn (85%) and Gibbston Back Road (15%) and made with a minimal handling approach to allow the essence of Pinot to shine. As it does in this complex, highly fragrant Pinot Noir. Aromas of dark cherries are underpinned by subtle notes of ripe Omega plums and a complex hint of spice on the long finish. 
RS <1.0 g; dry. 
Cellar with confidence for 10 to 11 years.