2014 Thistle Ridge Pinot Noir Waipara Valley North Canterbury

SKU #1273995 93 points Sam Kim

 Youthful yet harmonious and engaging; lovely lifted aromas of dark cherry, raspberry, clove and toasted almond lead to a succulent palate that is silky and elegant. The wine shows excellent fruit purity and persistency, and offers layers of fine texture and delightful fruit flavours. At its best: now to 2018.

91-92 points Raymond Chan

 The nose is full and up-front with ripe dark red berry and plum fruit aromas, along with raspberry jam and fruit pastille confectionary lift, indicating whole berry fermentation. The fruit is quite primary and youthful, building in depth with time in the glass. Medium-full bodied, up-front, plush, juicy and jammy fruit flavours of dark raspberries, cherries and plums are the feature on the palate. Some bright confectionary elements and red florals lift the fruit. The mouthfeel is soft and lush, and the fruit supported by supple, mellow tannins and integrated acidity providing a smooth, rounded structure. The fruit presence prevails, filling the mouth and carrying easily to a jam and confectionary nuanced, dry-textured finish. This is an up-front, soft and juicy Pinot Noir with confectionary notes and a supple mouthfeel. Serve with antipasto, tapas and Asian fare over the next 4 years.

K&L Notes

Thistle Ridge is made by top tier New Zealand estate Greystone (or Grey’s Peak as they’re known in the USA). We have built a direct relationship with the Greystone team and their wines have long been best sellers at K&L. Greystone was recently awarded top organic winery in NZ and winemaker Dominic is recognized as one of the rising stars of the industry. This stunning Waipara Valley estate has clay-limestone soils and free draining gravels perfectly suited to Pinot Noir. The viticulture and winemaking is meticulous, done by hand and is boutique in scale; this is a truly artisanal producer. With second label Thistle Ridge you are getting estate fruit and the same winemaking expertise but at a super economical price point. This all means a wine that seriously over delivers in the sub-$15 category. (Ryan Woodhouse K&L NZ Wine Buyer)

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Price: $14.99
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Staff Image By: Anthony Gittings | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/6/2017 | Send Email
This is honestly one of the best under $20 Pinot Noir I have come across in a very long time, so much so, it has become my house Pinot. A beautiful bouquet of savory herbs and white flowers jump out of the glass. Mouthwatering acid helps elevate the dark cherry and raspberry tones of this wine. A medium to full wine that has a long, silky lingering finish. This is a must have for any Pinot Noir lovers!

Staff Image By: Ivan Diaz | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/14/2016 | Send Email
Hailing from North Canterbury, one of the best regions in New Zealand for Pinot Noir, this gem is flying right under the radar and into our hearts. For an uncommonly low price, this organically produced wine is fresh and easy-going without sacrificing concentration or character. Tea leaves and flowers lend complexity to the cherry and raspberry flavors that greet the palate. It finishes with grace, letting the floral note provide a smooth coda leading to the next sip. At $15 a bottle this is an easy choice and a phenomenal pairing with herbed chicken or pork loin.

Staff Image By: Heather Vander Wall | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/10/2016 | Send Email
This wine is an absolute steal! With elegant, ripe, berry aromas on the nose, and soft, rounded fruit on the palate, this wine could easily hold its own against many a $30 Pinot from anywhere. Although not quite as savory as many New Zealand Pinot Noirs, the Thistle Ridge still embodies the unique climate of North Canterbury, where wine can reach a lovely ripe fruit quality, without losing a cut and drive, keeping it light and poised and yet powerful.

Staff Image By: Alex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/3/2016 | Send Email
Another home-run value from New Zealand buyer Ryan Woodhouse! Produced organically for three years now, the Thistle Ridge PN has a slight cola-berry sweetness on the nose, but on the palate it's dry and elegant, with great weight and bright fruit flavors of plum and boysenberry. There is no way this is going to last long, it tastes WAY more expensive than it is.

Staff Image By: Andrew Stevens | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/27/2016 | Send Email
Sometimes I worry that I am becoming a bit of a broken record when it comes to amazing Pinot Noir from NZ. Not that I will stop drinking or selling it though mind you, because there is just too many good wines coming from there. Bearing that in mind, here is yet another Pinot Noir that is not only spectacular, but completely underpriced at $15. Generous strawberry and cranberry notes come forward in this ripe, soft expression of Pinot. Easy drinking and crowd friendly though it may be, this does not mean that it is a one note wonder of a wine. There is enough acid here to provide length and a generous layered finish.

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