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I was bowled over with the Maven Wine range - from the superb packaging through to the flavours of the wines themselves. Based in the rapaura area of Marlborough this is the first vintage made under the guiding hand of the unique Mike Just - he of the eye-patch, Plantagenet descent and suit of armour. These notes were taken at the 25th Anniversary New Zealand Wine Tasting at Lords

Wine Tasting Note Maven Wines Chardonnay, 2005, Marlborough, New Zealand.
Approximately £10.
Here the grapes are purchased from other growers and average 20 years. Just a smidgen of oak influence here with 10% in new oak and 10% in old. Certainly fruit-driven with the oak underpinning the whole. Citrus and orange flavours enliven the palate.
Scribblings Rating - 92/100

Wine Tasting Note: Maven Wines Sauvignon Blanc, 2005, Marlborough, New Zealand.
Approximately £10.
Six different blocks output are blended into this. The vines are still young at just three years old, but with selection and post-fermentation blending produce a tight, crisp but lively wine perhaps lacking a touch in complexity (young vines) - still bright, crisp, vivacious.
Scribblings Rating - 92/100

I was lucky to sample the yet to be released oak aged Chardonnay. While they have engaged in battonage and full oak treatment the balance was spot on. Hard to fully pronounce on a wine that isnt going to be released for six months but it seemed damn good to me!

Wine Tasting Note Maven Wines Pinot Gris, Marlborough, New Zealand.
Around £10.
I love a good Pinot Gris here we have a good weight, broad delicious flavours and good balance. Nice golden hue to the colour and a goodly amount of pear and honey aromas. Peach and honeyed-apple with a sprinkling of spice, coupled with a good creamy texture, provide the interest in a broad, full palate. All this squeezed from the seven year old vines.
Scribblings Rating - 96/100



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I discovered the Maven wines one year after you at the 2007 NZ Tasting at Lords. I agree with your tasting notes from last year but tasting the 2006 vintage too you can see how this producer is going places. Mike Just is obvioulsy a very talented winemaker.