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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. The 2010 season was exemplary in Martinborough with a warmer than average, dry summer allowing perfectly ripe fruit to be harvested in April. The crop level was below average giving great concentration.

It’s at the vanguard of Pinot noir style in the New World and should age gracefully for up to 10 years. The wine is a true reflection of both Martinborough’s unique terroir and the skills and experience of winemaker Larry McKenna

The seventh release of a ‘Kupe' Pinot Noir. Abel clone fruit from vines close-planted in 1999 from the ‘Kupe' vineyard on Te Muna Road, fermented with 60% whole bunch to 13.3% alc., the wine spending 22 days in vat, and aged 11 months in 50% new French oak barriques. Very full, dark, deep, purple-hued black-red colour with purple on rim. This has a full, broad and intense nose of vibrant dark berry and cherry fruits, savoury black plums and dark herbs complexed with notes of liquorice, tar and minerals. Full-bodied, fresh and lively mouthfilling flavours of dark red berry fruit, herbs and savoury earth are intermixed with dried stalk whole bunch interest. Oaking is harmonious and integral, adding spice nuances to the array of flavours. The fruit has weight, concentration and density, and is framed by fine tannins forming a full structure with considerable texture and grip. The palate has an excellent balance of fruit richness and extraction, with energy from good acidity, and the robustness drives the flavours to a very long and sustained finish with a black fruit, herb and mineral-nuanced melange. This is a fully-structured, vigorous and complex-flavoured Pinot Noir with dark berry fruits and whole bunch influence. Serve with roasted red meats, and firm cheeses. It will develop over the next 8-10 years. Rating: 19.5-/20 Mar 2013 RRP $85.00 Raymond Chan Wine Reviews.

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