2013 TWR (Te Whare Ra) Pinot Noir Marlborough (Elsewhere $40+)

SKU #1160916

Benchmark New Zealand Pinot Noir, amazingly pure and silky, showing the very best of what the country has to offer. The 2013 vintage has been hailed as a "vintage of a lifetime" in NZ and TWR's Pinot Noir shows exactly why. Carefully hand-selected from two single blocks; one on the deep alluvial gravel soils of Renwick, and one from a steep north facing slope in the Omaka Valley famous for its heavier clay soils. The Renwick component gives detail, layers of intrigue and precision, while the inclusion of the Omaka hillside fruit has added power and generosity. Whilst remaining elegant and fine, the 2013 Pinot has a slightly more masculine, darker edge to the fruit and broader, richer, silky mid-palate texture. My favorite release from TWR and one that is sure to be a real crowd pleaser! All the fruit was hand-picked, hand-sorted and then re-sorted by the individual berry! The ferments are done in tiny one ton open top tanks and are hand plunged. This is all about absolute quality and minute attention to detail and it really shows in the wine. (Ryan Woodhouse, K&L New Zealand wine buyer)

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Price: $26.99

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By: David Othenin-Girard |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/25/2014  | Send Email
TWR is coming up. Solid little offering for what will surely one day be known world-wide as one of Marlborough's best. Right now, be one of the lucky few who know how special these wines are. Top quality.

By: Mike Barber |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/16/2014  | Send Email
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This is a Pinot with structure--a nervy and delicious cool weather red with lean red fruit flavors but plenty of mouth-coating tannins. The fruit notes here are slightly bitter, lean raspberry and plum resting behind cassis and lavender, leaving a wonderfully long impression on the palate. The winemakers at Te Whare Ra took full advantage of the excellent 2013 growing season to craft this mouthwatering Pinot.
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2019

By: Jim Chanteloup |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/16/2014  | Send Email
The wines from Te Whare Ra have been turning heads since we've brought them into our New Zealand category, and the 2013s may be the best to date. The Pinot shows lovely dark plum, strawberry, cherry, light toasty oak, earth/clay notes, a hint of rose petal, tea bag and spice. On the palate, the wine has soft supple tannins that are balanced and harmonious with a long, persistent finish.

By: Jim Barr |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/15/2014  | Send Email
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Although New Zealand has been almost exclusively known for wonderful Sauvignon Blancs the past several decades, we have seen in the past several years some nicely produced, but not outstanding, Pinot Noirs coming from many producers there. A few of these productions have impressed me to the point that I have told many customers that New Zealand is on the same quality threshold that the Willamette Valley wineries were thirty-five to forty years ago. And I have told customers that while these productions were promising, like those of the Oregon producers, it would probably be another seven to ten years when we would see some incredible quality Pinots coming from New Zealand that would rival the fabulous Pinots that now are coming from the Willamette Valley, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast and the Santa Lucia Mountain range. Then Ryan Woodhouse brings in the 2012 Te Whare Ra, and it was thoroughly impressive. And now with the 2013, I have to take several steps back and tell you that I was off by five to ten years, in that it would not take the New Zealand producers so long to create Pinots that would be on an equivalent level as the aforementioned wines. This is an amazing Pinot from a truly great, great vintage. Medium–deep ruby in color, with opulent, distinctive aromas of dried rose petals, strawberry, red fruits and spicy notes underscored by a slate mineral tone and a mild gamey quality. This carries over to a complex, layered, deep set of flavors with excellent balance, broadness and viscosity, and a lush mid-range and finish. Rusty has told me that this Gem is a truly great wine and needs to be in our collection immediately before it vanishes. Good work, Ryan, and thanks for making me eat my words. 19.0 UC Davis points out of 20.
Drink from 2014 to 2020

By: Mellyn Craig |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/14/2014  | Send Email
I am already a fan of the TWR wines, but this 2013 Pinot Noir elevated their quality to another level with the same great price! The 2013 was an amazing vintage for New Zealand, but I think what really made a difference this year is the addition of a second vineyard in this wine. The new addition is a vineyard from a steep, north facing slope (which is the sunny side in the Southern Hemisphere) with clay soils. The clay soil brings a silky mouth feel that I love! This wine has a great balance of red and dark currant, with a lot of spice, flint and earth. The complexity far exceeds the price. Enjoy!

By: Ryan Woodhouse |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/14/2014  | Send Email
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Pure, elegant, focused, silky, layered and exotic. The descriptors could go on and on but all you need to do is buy a bottle and see for yourself. Next level quality from TWR; one of the best NZ Pinots I have tasted, period.
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2020

By: Keith Wollenberg |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/11/2014  | Send Email
This organically and biodynamically-grown Pinot Noir shows a bit more flesh than past vintages, as it comes from two vineyards. One has gravelly soil, the other is a steep slope with more clay. The result is a Pinot of both finesse and power, at a very reasonable price for the quality. Bravo!

By: Olivia Ragni |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/11/2014  | Send Email
I have to admit I was expecting something a little fruitier and rounder after tasting the 2012 vintage, but the 2013 is excellent. It’s really well balanced, adding a little earth, spice and tannins. There’s an excellent leafy, brambly quality to this wine that I love, integrated into the cranberry, black cherry and raspberry fruits. A great Pinot and a great vintage from TWR.

By: Joe Manekin |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/10/2014  | Send Email
Most any Pinot Noir fan will find something to like in this extremely well crafted bottling: juicy yet crisp fruits that fall somewhere in the middle of the red to dark spectrum, lovely floral inner mouth aromas, and balanced tannins that frame the wine and should give it enough structure to handle lamb chops equally well as a healthy slab of grilled Alaskan salmon (it is July, after all!)

By: Melissa Smith |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/14/2014  | Send Email
Meaty and dense, while managing to be light. This would be great with braised meat dishes finished with just a touch of cream or a savory spinach and gruyere bread pudding.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.
Country:

New Zealand

- New Zealand is an extremely diverse wine-growing nation. The long history of producing wine started in the 1830s with wineries such as Mission Estate (1850) and Te Mata Estate (1896) still producing wine today. The two islands hold a multitude of different growing climates ranging from warmer areas such as Hawke’s Bay to very cool regions such as Waitaki, and Awatere. Most regions are defined as Maritime with the exception being Central Otago that has a moderate Continental climate with the high elevation creating dramatic diurnal swings in temperature. The plethora of grapes grown in New Zealand reflects this diverse microclimate make up. Everything has a place here, Bordeaux varietals and Syrah in Hawke’s Bay, Chardonnay and Pinot in Nelson, Pinot Noir and Riesling in Central Otago , aromatic whites in Waipara and pretty much everything you can imagine in Marlborough. New Zealand is also one of the “greenest” wine producing nations on earth (94% of wine certified sustainable in 2013) with a strong focus on organic and Biodynamic farming.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5
Organic: