Ford made a car from 1950 to 1972 called the Zephyr. It was made famous, with its stablemate the Zodiac, in the TV series Z-Cars that introduced Brian Blessed to the majority of households in the UK. There were four models of the Zephyr in its 22 years of production, and I was shown four wines from a company named after the car. Based in New Zealand, Zephyr is made by the Glover family who started growing vines in 1985. Planted with Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Riesling, followed by Gewurztraminer in 1990, they decided to produce their own brand in 2007.
2009 Zephyr Pinot Noir
Soft, creamy berries, a bit of sweetness and a spicy, gentle sweet berry flavour. There is more spice, a berry note and then the initial fatness cleans up pretty well. A touch of farmyard on the finish. 6.5/10 A bit like the Mk1 Zephyr, a round, friendly design with lots of positive but no sex appeal. The sort of wine that your grandad drinks.
A plasticine and spice aroma, with a bit of ginger beer. The palate is, like to Sauvignon, creamy with nice hits of orange, some mineral notes and a graphite flavour mixed with lemon. Ginger ale on the finish. Not bad at all. 7/10 Sexy & rock'n'rolly as is the Mk2 Ford. You desire this wine, and car, and want to rip the top off on a summers evening.
A light, floral aroma, some gentle gooseberry aromas. A clean, creamy texture, some light alcohol and a bundle of zingy fruit. It is ok, but then the alcohol attacks you. 6/10 This is the Mark 3 Zephyr. You know that it is good under the surface, but the things you get on the surface are, at best, boring and run of the mill.
Lots of rosewater, some light fresh aromas and then a fat, oily, bitter palate. A bundle of chalk on the palate and then a lot of clay. This is a big pass. Almost tastes like Gin on the finish. 4/10 Oh dear - it all went wrong here. The Mk 4 car was all linear with harsh angles, and the wine is the same, and both were wobbly and unrefined.