A first tasting of Obliix wines

A first tasting of Obliix wines

Obliix is part of the group of labels set up by Sir George Fistonich in his new Fistonich family Vineyards venture. This is how the new label Obliix introduces itself in the PR accompanying the wine samples – “Diverging from the straight and narrow, Obliix wines are made when the winemaker deices to take the road less travelled. The end result is delicious and joyful wines.”

Obliix Sauvignon Blanc 2023

A Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, using fruit from the Ballochdale Vineyard, over 300 metres of height above sea level, and inland, in the Awatere Valley. Not only a ‘classic Marlborough’ expression, but a very specific set of flavours that identify this as sub-regional, ‘classic Awatere’ Sauvignon Blanc. A pale, silvery green in the glass. Aromas of grapefruit, green plum, apple, cut grass, lime leaf and sorrel. More restrained in style than it’s Rapaura neighbours, and with a mineral acidity that delivers a brisk linearity through the palate. Dry and crisp right through to a tart, mouth-watering finish. 91pts

Oblix Chardonnay 2021

Hawke’s Bay provides the fruit for the Chardonnay in the range – oddly labelled as ‘Oblix’ not ‘Obliix’. 2021 was the third in a run of great vintages for Chardonnay in the Bay. A pale lemon-green in the glass. A little shy on the nose, but with a good swirl, you get a bouquet of lemon peel, apple, peach, chestnut and nougat. The palate delivers what the perfume is reluctant to – well focussed and zesty, with a lively acidity and ripe stonefruit and citrus flavours. Some savoury notes of green olive and tarragon add complexity and the finish is fresh and bright. 90pts

Obliix Rosé 2023 

A pale ruby/coral pink in the glass, with redcurrant, pomegranate, watermelon, candy apple and lilac aromas. Zesty and generous, showing a bright acidity. The palate turns to citrus notes of blood orange and lemonade, with a layer of spice sitting on top – jalapeno and paprika. A creamy texture develops and the fruit sweetens, heading back to cherry and red liquorice. The finish is quite complete, bringing the various elements into line, with a dash of tart minerality. 90pts

Obliix Syrah Malbec Viognier 2022

From the ‘jewel in the crown’ Cornerstone Vineyard of the Gimblett Gravels in Hawke’s Bay, in the tricky vintage of 2022. A light to medium density ruby/cherry red in the glass. The perfume is coltish, youthful and juicy. Cranberry and Doris plum, blueberry muffin, pepper, date and kirsch collide on the nose. Agile, light-footed and bright into the palate. Acidity sets the tone – oak and tannin are just whispers in the shadows. A fruit-forward crunch but also well-balanced and smooth. A precise, harmonious finish with moderate length. Drink young, and I tried a second sample lightly chilled, which worked very well. 91pts

Obliix Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2022

Also made with fruit from the Cornerstone Vineyard – a little over two-thirds is Cabernet, with Merlot and just 5% of Malbec added to the blend. complements the juicy spice of the merlot and Malbec. A flushing garnet colour with magenta at the edges. Intensity and flush of black plum and red berry flavours to the fore. A gentle seasoning of smoky, vanilla-scented oak works in tandem with a greener, herbal edge, adding tension and character. Tannin is quite grippy and tight for now – look for that to soften with some time integrating in the bottle. 91pts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *