2011 Rippon "Emma's Block" Pinot Noir Lake Wanaka Central Otago New Zealand (Biodynamic) (Elsewhere $90)

SKU #1238557 91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Medium ruby-purple in color, the 2011 Emma's Block Pinot Noir reveals quite an earthy, savory nose to begin then gives way to an aromatic core of kirsch, cranberries and mulberries with underlying cedar and cinnamon stick hints. Medium-bodied and tightly knit in the mouth, it presents a good amount of earth-laced fruit layers with a medium level of chewy tannins and lively acid before finishing with very good length. Drink it 2014 to 2020+. (LPB)  (10/2013)

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 (aged for 17 months in oak): Palish medium red. Aromas of redcurrant, mocha and spices. Distinctly lean on the palate, with hints of orange peel and herbs lifting the middle palate but giving the finish a slightly bitter edge. (ST)  (9/2014)

K&L Notes

From a tiny single parcel of vines that sit right on the shores of Lake Wanaka. The vines here grown in a unique soil composed of layers of schist gravels and clay that were deposited as the lake settled over millennia. I generally find that this particular site shows the most exotic characters of Rippon. The texture is broader on the mid palate and the tannins are soft and silky. A beautiful wine show both exuberance and restraint. One of NZ's finest Pinots. (Ryan Woodhouse - K&L NZ Wine Buyer)

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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 (%): 14