It was a 1995 Te Mata ‘Coleraine’ Hawke’s Bay Cabernet/Merlot. Who knows how long he had had it in his cellar, but there it was, in pristine condition. Immaculate label and unmarked in any significant way. Pretty much as Cool Pete was this day. On opening the colour was good garnet red, and the aromas everything you expected of an aged, but ripe enough Bordeaux blend. Lovely soft blackcurrants and dried herbs, a touch of undergrowth and cedar, some oak too. Then on palate, incredibly elegant and light on its feet, like Cool Pete. The flavours showed the cooler climate, but without and herbaceous stalky or leafy notes. Bottle-aged for sure, the secondary and tertiary flavours prominent. Cool Pete is like that too. He’s moving along, but never moved out! The wine still fresh, though not quite vigorous, but lively and reasonably animated. The tannins were still there, but essentially well on the path of resolution. Cool Pete has mellowed too, over the years
If there could be any criticism, it came from Cool Peter: it was a bit lacking in concentration – but heck, SWMBO and I own up to that all the time! For those vinously minded, it was a lovely growing seasoned marred by rain at the end resulting in dilution. Hawke’s Bay got away lightly. Other parts of the country got washed out. We ended up drinking the bottle easily. It was one of those easy to get-on with bottles, with plenty to talk about. Sounds a bit like Cool Pete.