An homage to Trinity Hill

(left to right) John Hancock, founder of Trinity Hill; Warren Gibson, chief winemaker and Damian Fischer, winemaker (Photo: Bob Campbell MW)

A vertical tasting of five vintages of Trinity Hill Homage Syrah offered the chance to check the progress of four vintages and taste the latest release from 2015 for the first time.

I included Trinity Hill Homage when I compiled a list of 15 iconic New Zealand wines a couple of years ago. A survey at that time revealed:

  • First vintage 2002
  • 80% is exported
  • The wine is allocated
  • Quantity produced is 100-500 cases
  • It is not a single vineyard wine (blend of three vineyards)
  • Homage has not been released in 42% of vintages since it was first released (compare that to Te Mata Coleraine (9%) and Stonyridge Larose (3%)
  • Recommended cellaring potential is 15-20 years
  • Bottles are sealed with a cork
  • Retail price has remained at NZD $120 since the first release in 2002 but increased to NZD $130 for the 2014 vintage

I was impressed with the 2015 Trinity Hill Homage Syrah, which I assume will be released with a retail price of NZD $130. Intense fruit, floral and spice flavours are supported by ripe, round tannins that suggest good cellaring potential. It’s a classic Homage style.

The 2014 Trinity Hill Homage Syrah is my favourite vintage. I liked it as much when I tasted it recently as I did around one year ago. I confess to being totally knocked out by the wine’s texture.

2013 Trinity Hill Homage Syrah scored one less point that its rating a couple of years ago. Not that the wine has gone backwards it’s just how it rated in a five-vintage context. Still fairly tannic but with the potential to emerge from its cocoon like a beautiful butterfly. From a top vintage.

The 2010 Trinity Hill Homage Syrah gained a point from my original rating. It’s seductively accessible and beginning to show some interesting bottle development, though with plenty of spare potential.

2009 Trinity Hill Homage Syrah was the most accessible wine in the vertical tasting. I loved it when I first tasted it and love it as much right now. Soft and seductive – delicious!

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