Pinot Noir, Wairarapa

Pinot Noir is a red grape that is one of the most challenging to grow in any part of the world. Due to its thin skin and tight bunches, it is susceptible to both mould and disease. However, when it is successful, it produces some of the most amazing wines in the world. Although its home is Burgundy, it has emerged as a popular variety in Australia. Representing only 1% of grapes crushed, it has built a high profile with a number of world-class, distinctly Australian wines being produced. The greatest examples coming from the cool climates of the Adelaide Hills, Tasmania, Mornington Peninsula, Geelong and the Yarra Valley.

Pinot Noir performs well on the deepish limestone based subsoils that are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or. However, yields need to be kept in check. Pinot Noir's concentration and varietal characters disappear rapidly if yields are excessive. Some of the best and most expensive wines in the world are still found in Burgundy.

Pinot Noir also plays a key role in Champagne, being blended with Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier. In the US, Oregon and Washington state are producing outstanding wines. In New Zealand, great Pinot Noirs are crafted in Martinborough and in Central Otago, New Zealand's only true continental climate.

The thin skins of Pinot Noir mean the wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However, the best wines have grippy tannins, fragrance and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, but as it matures, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouthfeel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey nuances emerging.
Maori for 'glistening waters’, the Wairarapa is located in the south-east corner of New Zealand's North Island, about an hour away from Wellington. Amongst the small, quaint towns and rolling fields of livestock, you'll find some of New Zealand's finest wines.

The small community of boutique winemakers in the region work hard to preserve the unique terroir of the region. Wairarapa offers hot summers, cool nights, and long, dry autumns that are perfect for ripening. The strong winds and harsh, semi-maritime climate leads to low yields of healthy, small grapes with very thick skins - these grapes are treated with care to make some outstanding wine.
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  1. Paddy Borthwick 'Paper Road' Pinot Noir 2018
    Harvested from 3 vineyards allows selection of the best batches to consistently produce pure Pinot Noir. The nose shows spicy savoury and bright, juicy red fruits. It is medium-bodied with soft velvety tannins, a mix of tart and sweet cherry fruit ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  2. Paddy Borthwick Pinot Noir 2015
    From family owned & operated estate founded in 1996, this wine has a Bouquet of maraschino cherries, plums, cranberries and cedar. A core of dark cherry, cloves and wild herbs are supported by bright fruit and French oak that complement a rich ... Learn More
    pts
    Huon Hooke
    Out of stock
  3. Escarpment NOIR Pinot Noir 2019
    The Noir label brings together 35 years of wine making experience in New Zealand, creating a soft, bright, fruit forward wine which can be enjoyed immediately or will cellar successfully for a number of years. 100% Martinborough hand-harvested fruit has been open-top-fermented. ... Learn More
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    Out of stock
  4. Escarpment Martinborough Pinot Noir 2017
    "Winemaker Larry McKenna now has 30 years of experience with Martinborough Pinot Noir, and its on full display in this blend assembled from various plots around the village." Wine Enthusiast Wonderful aromatics with cherry and red currant aromas and some earthy ... Learn More
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    Out of stock
  5. Escarpment Martinborough Pinot Noir 2016
    "Winemaker Larry McKenna now has 30 years of experience with Martinborough Pinot Noir, and its on full display in this blend assembled from various plots around the village." Wine Enthusiast Wonderful aromatics with cherry and red currant aromas and some earthy ... Learn More
    pts
    Mike Bennie
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    Out of stock
  6. Escarpment Regional Blend Pinot Noir 2018
    100% Martinborough fruit with the majority coming from our Te Muna Road Vineyard. This wine is typically a blend of Dijon clones 667 and 777 and Abel, with clones 114 and 115 occasionally. It exhibits fruit, complexity, and texture, beautifully. The fruit was hand-harvested, then ... Learn More
    pts
    James Suckling
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    Bob Campbell MW
  7. Escarpment Regional Blend Pinot Noir 2016
    "The product of a warm, dry summer and balanced crop loads, this is a very strong vintage for this iconic Martinborough pinot noir. On the nose, plenty of fresh red cherries and spiced red plums come to the fore. Succulent, ... Learn More
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    James Suckling
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    Wine Spectator
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    Robert Parker
    Out of stock
  8. Escarpment 'Te Rehua' Pinot Noir 2019
    This wine was grown on the Barton Vineyard, Huangarua Road, Martinborough from vines 27 years old. A combination of deep alluvial gravels which the Martinborough Terraces are renowned for, and a blend of many clones grown in a very sheltered spot ... Learn More
    pts
    Cameron Douglas MS
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    Bob Campbell MW
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    Raymond Chan Wine Reviews
  9. Escarpment 'Kiwa' Pinot Noir 2018
    A blend of Pommard clones that were originally sourced from the University of California. Martinborough from 28 year old vines. Will easily age a decade. ... Learn More
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
  10. Escarpment 'Te Rehua' Pinot Noir 2018
    This wine was grown on the Barton Vineyard, Huangarua Road, Martinborough from vines 25 years old. A combination of deep alluvial gravels which the Martinborough Terraces are renowned for and a blend of many clones grown in a very sheltered spot ... Learn More
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
  11. Escarpment 'Te Rehua' Pinot Noir 2017
    This wine was grown on the Barton Vineyard, Huangarua Road, Martinborough from vines 25 years old. A combination of deep alluvial gravels which the Martinborough Terraces are renowned for and a blend of many clones grown in a very sheltered spot ... Learn More
    pts
    Gary Walsh
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    pts
    Raymond Chan Wine Reviews
    Out of stock
  12. Escarpment 'Kiwa' Pinot Noir 2017
    This wine was grown on the Cleland Vineyard Cambridge Road, Martinborough from 30 year old vines. A combination of deep alluvial gravels which the Martinborough Terraces are renowned for and a blend of Clones UCD 5 and 6 always rewards us with savoury, ... Learn More
    pts
    Raymond Chan Wine Reviews
    Out of stock
  13. Escarpment 'Kupe' Pinot Noir 2011
    Fermented in wooden French cuvees, hand plunged and aged in 50% new French oak barriques the wine was given every priority during its elevation and now shows all the hallmarks of a grand young wine on its release in 2012. Over the ... Learn More
    pts
    Jancis Robinson MW
    Out of stock
  14. Escarpment 'Kupe' Pinot Noir 2019
    Inspired by wines from Burgundy, the high-density planting gives a unique opportunity for the Abel clone to express its self in a distinctive manner. A unique wine that always exhibits perfume, power, and elegance, all rolled into one exquisite package. ... Learn More
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    pts
    Raymond Chan Wine Reviews
    Out of stock
  15. Escarpment 'Kupe' Pinot Noir 2018
    Fermented in wooden French cuvees, hand plunged and aged in 50% new French oak barriques the wine was given every priority during its elevation and now shows all the hallmarks of a grand young wine on its release in 2012. Over the ... Learn More
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    Out of stock
  16. Dry River Pinot Noir 2017
    The nose is very attractive, with a perfume-like finesse and a lighter than usual appearance. A fresh, complex and floral nose shows Christmas lilies, violets and honeysuckle. There are the hallmark, darker Dry River characters of fruit of the forest, ... Learn More
    pts
    Gary Walsh
  17. Kusuda Pinot Noir 2018
    Ranked: #1 Pinot Noir 2018 from Martinborough Hiro Kusuda: From the high-density block (majority 7400 plants/ha) we started to lease in 2011 then purchased after the 2015 vintage. First ever Pinot Noir made from own vineyard. Harvested by hand, 90% de-stemmed, aged in oak barriques ... Learn More
    Kusuda Pinot Noir 2018
    $155.00 Per item
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    Out of stock
  18. Kusuda Pinot Noir 2019
    Hiro Kusuda: From the high-density block (majority 7400 plants/ha) we started to lease in 2011 then purchased after the 2015 vintage. First ever Pinot Noir made from own vineyard. Harvested by hand, 90% de-stemmed, aged in oak barriques for 15 months (26% new). Unfined and ... Learn More
    Kusuda Pinot Noir 2019
    $160.00 Per item
    pts
    Bob Campbell MW
    Out of stock
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