Any lover of Central Otago wine will be familiar with the name Dicey. Robin Dicey, originally from South Africa, moved to Central in 1992 and was instrumental in establishing many of the region’s vineyards. His sons, Matt and James, have an enormous amount of experience as winemakers and viticulturists. In 2020, the pair decided to launch Dicey together, sourcing fruit from their own vineyards in Bannockburn.
Dicey Riesling 2020
Perhaps inspired by Germany’s kabinett Rieslings, this is a super example of why the lower alcohol/medium dry style works so well in central. Bright lemon sorbet and crunchy, almost tart green apple on the nose. The fruit flavours are crisp and strikingly vivid whilst mouth-watering acidity is balanced by a definite thread of sweetness, The 10.5% alcohol gives a touch of body, suggesting the wine would partner food well, and the finish is both juicy and succulent. A precise, focussed (and delicious) example of this style.
Dicey Chenin Blanc 2020
It is a mystery to me why Chenin Blanc is not more desirable. Mandarin, kaffir lime and Granny Smith apple on the nose. The palate has plenty of concentration with just-ripe white nectarine and fresh dill joining the orange citrus flavours. Although there is a little sweetness, there is an appealing wet-stone element that gives grip and texture.
Dicey Pinot Gris 2020
Apple crumble and nashi pear aromas are subtle. The palate is balanced though there is a warmth from the alcohol that contributes to a slightly phenolic finish. Drier than most, this is a relatively restrained example of pinot gris.
Dicey Pinot Noir 2019
Bright limpid ruby with youthful juicy red fruit aromas of strawberry and raspberry. The palate is silky and ripe with just the right amount of tannin to give grip and structure. This is an approachable, attractive style of pinot noir that is drinking very well now.
Dicey Single Vineyard The Inlet Pinot Noir 2019
This is a much more intense, darkly fruited pinot noir. On the nose, damson and black cherry fruit is joined by a cinnamon-edged langues de chat biscuit note. The palate is not as forthcoming as the regular pinot noir, the tannins bolder and the palate more firmly structured. There is good persistence of flavour suggesting that for those with patience, this will reward cellaring. Drink from late 2022.
Dicey Black Rabbit Single Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019
The most complex and interesting of the three pinots tasted. A nice touch of dried herbs, thyme and sage, overlays the red berry aromas and there is an exotic note of star anise and red liquorice too. On the palate there is masses of ripe, bold fruit harnessed by a strong savoury character and a chewy, tannic backbone finished off with good length. This is a wine built for the long haul, drink from 2022.
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