2012 Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir Marlborough (Elsewhere $50)

SKU #1194190 96 points Bob Campbell

 2012 was a fairly cool vintage in Marlborough but there is certainly no lack of ripeness in this fine, elegant pinot noir. The wine has appealing density, and a sinewy texture with red cherry, spice, mineral and a hint of dried herbs and licorice. (Bob Campbell MW - Gourmet Traveler Magazine)  (6/2014)

96 points Decanter

 Intense, sumptuous and wonderfully perfumed with dark plum, black cherry, a hint of violets and an appealing gamey, savoury palate. Long and complex, hinting at it’s potential. The texture is seductively silky, blanketing a spine of fine tannins. (BC)  (8/2014)

93 points James Suckling

 A pinot noir that is subtle and complex with dried strawberry, cedar, nut and light meat character. Full to medium body with hints of chocolate, wet earth and mushroom. Such balance and finesse here. (JS)  (10/2014)

91 points Wine & Spirits

 A cool season in the southern Wairau Valley produced this fresh and floral pinot. Its black cherry depths of flavor feel fattened up by the tannins, which carry hints of white tea along with a touch of caramel richness. With the clean lines of a Marlborough pinot, this is targeted at grilled salmon or apricot-glazed roast pork.  (2/2015)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Elegant, with pure, plush raspberry coulis and cherry flavors at the core, gaining momentum as the layers of clove, pine, lavender and red licorice come in. Exhibits power on the finish. (MW)  (6/2014)

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good medium red. Plum and strawberry aromas are complicated by herbs, smoke and earth. Supple and fine-grained, with slightly herb-edged flavors of strawberry, raspberry, chocolate and flinty minerality. Conveys good clarity and a restrained sweetness, with a building savory character in the mouth. Finishes with smooth tannins and a repeating herbal quality. A well-made pinot of moderate depth and intensity. (ST)  (9/2014)

K&L Notes

Winemaker's Notes: "Appealing at once, the nose of our Pinot Noir 2012 is ripe with plum, aromatic spice and red florals. The palate is focused with a savoury architecture; bittersweet chocolate, dark fruit and spice play with leather and hints of earthiness. Chalky tannins linger on a persistent finish. We particularly enjoy our 2012 pinot noir with soy glazed bbq pork ribs and confit of duck leg. Grapes for this wine were sourced from carefully selected sites located within the southern Wairau Valley including our Mustang and Barracks vineyards. The soils have a clay base with aged alluvial gravels that provide good drainage. This soil structure allows a relatively consistent availability of water to the vines through the summer months, minimising water stress to the pinot noir vines. Our vines are all pruned and trained to a two-cane, vertically shoot positioned canopy with an average yield of 5 tonnes/hectare."

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Price: $38.99

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By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/2/2015 | Send Email
This dark, spicy Pinot shows the power that Marlborough is capable of. This rich, solid wine is a great example of why Cloudy Bay is so famous. It was fantastic with lamb!

By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/20/2015 | Send Email
It can sometimes be easy to overlook the most obvious brands when looking for new wines. Sure Cloudy Bay is a far larger producer than decades ago when they rose to fame...but one must consider the pedigree and vineyard holdings that an established producer like Cloudy Bay has. These guys were in the game before most people even thought you could grow grapes in Marlborough! They have some of the most revered parcels of land in the region and a 30 year track record as one of the most influential producers that helped put New Zealand on the world wine map. This Pinot Noir is a minuscule production compared with their world famous Sauvignon Blanc. The fruit was carefully selected from particular vineyard holdings in the Southern Valleys (an area quickly becoming recognized as the best sub-region for Pinot Noir in Marlborough). The vines are cropped to just two tons per acre. The wine has plenty of rich, dark fruit, leafy notes, toasted spices and a lick of French oak. The palate is mid weight with good concentration and ripe soft tannins. This is sure to please a lot of people just as it pleased the worlds top wine critics with multiple 96 point scores!

Additional Information:


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.

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