At first I wondered why they were doing this as they already have a quality mid-priced range in the CELLAR SELECTION range which has some lovely and affordable wines.
HERE and HERE
Instead of discounting the excellent Black Label range, Villa Maria has also chosen not to push too much of the top quality wine down to the Cellar Selection range which is increasingly discounted in supermarkets to the 'low teens' price and have created the 'buffer' range Platinum Selection. This was originally set at $24 a bottle (higher for the pinot noir) but I've bought the chardonnay, rose and pinot gris at less than $20 and the pinot noir at about $22. I bought the pinot gris for Her Indoors and haven't bought the sauvignon blanc because neither of us drink the stuff.
I was very impressed with the chardonnay which clearly shows some of the Keltern Vineyard character of the Black Label single-vineyard chardonnay.
It has great Hawkes Bay chardonnay character and has been handled expensively and well with good wood vanilla and spice showing followed by nice creaminess. I like this wine.
Her Indoors reported that the pinot gris was fruity reminiscent of pears and peach and spicy with good weight. It was much richer than a lot of other pinot gris she's drunk recently.
I tried the Marlborough Rose and was gob-smacked. This is one of the country's best roses. It is fresh and delicious with some decent weight underneath. The aroma of plum and strawberry follows through to a palate of nice light red fruits. The wine is 2018 and will carry over to 2020 drinking with no problem or loss of flavour.
We haven't tried the pinot noir yet but are looking forward to it especially as it's likely to have same and similar fruit as the Black Label Marlborough pinot noir in it.
* Platinum is known as a transition metal which is quite apt for this range of Villa Maria wines being evolution from one form, stage, or style to another.