Browse our reviews below.
Australian Financial Review Magazine,
Top Twenty Wines of the Year, Bell Hill Chardonnay 2006, "A high-density, biodynamic vineyard painstakingly planted by Marcel Giesen and Sherwyn Veldhuizen on an old limestone quarry in north Canterbury, Bell Hill signalled from day one that it was going to make some of New Zealand's most compelling wines. The 2006 Chardonnay, made in miniscule quantities, is a quite brilliant example. Barrel fermented in mainly older wood, this smells of where it comes from, with its intense earth and mineral, wet stone aromas, together with a touch of white fruits, while the palate is both intense and restrained with a fine vein of acidity running through, ensuring a long life ahead.
The Pinnacle of New World Pinot Noir? Ultra limited offering of Bell Hill 2006 has just arrived! Bell Hill is a tiny producer that has generated extraordinary excitement amongst Pinot Noir (and Chardonnay) lovers around the world for its incredible potential. Since the inaugural release of the 2003 Pinot Noir, pinotphiles have madly scrambled to obtain a sliver of the tiny (between 600 and 2,000 bottles) annual production. Ever since Jancis Robinson MW scored the first vintage an astounding 19.5 points (her highest-ever score for Pinot Noir outside Burgundy) critics and consumers alike have closely watched Bell Hill's progress, with many believing these region has perhaps the best credentials to challenge the supremacy and quality of Burgundy with Pinot Noir. The wines are sublime, both powerful yet elegant, packed with flavour and complexity, and will doubtless reward five-to-ten years' cellaring. If you love Pinot Noir, do not miss this very rare opportunity to obtain some of the rarest, great Pinots made.
Juke's Dream Dozen Kiwi Pinot Noirs,
Bell Hill, Pinot Noir, North Canterbury 2007 ***** (18.5). "The fervour surrounding Bell Hill's mind-blowingly serious wines is infectious. The 'it's all pre-allocated' aura only whips us all into various states of frenzy, too. So, are they worth it? Most definately. Gorgeous structure and a restraint that could turn the most fervent anti-Kiwi Pinot drinker into a dribbling groupie make this the must-own wine of the moment. 2009-2015.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar,
New Zealand Sauvignon and Pinot. "Among the highlights of my tastings were a growing number of pinot noirs from limestone-rich sites with favored northern expositions. Until recently, precious few sites had been found, much less exploited, but between the North Canterbury producers Pyramid valley and Bell Hill and a growing number of wineries in Waitaki Valley in North Otago, this category holds considerable promise for making world-class pinot noirs with distinctive soil character and real drive."
2005 Bell Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir Canterbury. Very dark red. Deep aromas of blackberry, black cherry, bitter chocolate, smoked meat and underbrush, complicated by mint and sexy oak spices. Sappy and densely packed, with tightly coiled black fruit and spice flavours complemented by savory saline and meaty notes. This rich, dry, soil-driven pinot boasts excellent inner-palate energy and finishes with dusty, fine-grained tannins and an impression of strong extract. A fascinating and rather uncompromising wine that's about much more than simply fruit. 92 points.
Cuisine Wine Country 2009
Marcel Giesen and Sherwyn Veldhuizen took to the limestone hills of Weka Pass in 1997 to establish what quickly became a cult label. A painstaking traditional approach is used to produce Pinot Noir and Chardonnay of distinction.
Air NZ Magazine,
Chardonnay to Make You Smile, “I was recently asked to choose my favourite chardonnay maker. That’s a hard call. I came up with a short list of Bell Hill, Craggy Range, Felton Road, Kumeu River, Martinborough Vineyards, Neudorf and Trinity Hill.”
Pinot Noir 1in100, Bell Hill Pinot Noir 2006, “This concentrated and complex Pinot Noir is at once spicy and savoury with pepper, five spice and charcuterie flavours, and fruit flavours of greengage plums and redcurrents that swell and build to plums and black cherries on the finish. It’s a structured style with a long life ahead of it.” 95 points.
Bell Hill Chardonnay 2004 North Canterbury, Tasted at Providores Restaurant, London. “A profound Chardonnay from a remarkable vineyard in the Canterbury Hills. Deep yellow coloured, this is wonderfully aromatic with nutty, buttery, toasty depth and some crisp freshness. The palate is powerful and nutty with intense, bold, peach, pear and citrus fruit, as well as fantastic acidity and freshness. There’s a complex, subtly cabbage-like edge that reminds me of a great white Burgundy. 94/100.