2014 Escarpment "Kiwa" Pinot Noir Martinborough (Elsewhere $70)

SKU #1329461 99 points Raymond Chan

 Dark, even ruby-red colour, a little lighter on edge with slight garnet hues. This has a very full and gently voluminous nose unfolding layers of dark red berry fruits entwined with waves of dried herbs, spices and nuances of cedar. The nose has a refined and concentrated core, and is beautifully ethereal and exotic, revealing funky Middle Eastern spice and cedary oak detail in the glass. Medium-bodied, the palate features rich and lusciously sweet red berry fruit flavours harmoniously interwoven with spices, dark herbs and cedar with nutty oak detail adding interest. The fruit is supported by very fine-grained, silky tannins that lend structural finesse, and the wine flows effortlessly revealing spice and whole cluster nuances as it carries to a very long, lingering, elegant finish with flowery tannins. This is an elegant, silky smooth, exotic Pinot Noir with red fruits complexed by spices, herbs and cedar.

95 points James Suckling

 A gently smoky and highly nuanced nose offers discreet yet complex sappy notes as well as a lighter stony and almost chalky edge. Beautifully ripe red and dark cherries grow and grow in the glass. The palate has a curvy, fleshy shape to it; it's really smooth and supple thanks to nut-ripe tannins. Hints of graphite-like savory flavours and bright dark cherry fruit power through the neatly framed, crisp finish. Best from 2018.

93 points Wine Spectator

 Dense and concentrated, with herb and cola accents to the tangy berry and plum flavors. Dark and brooding, with date nut bread, tobacco and baking spice details lingering on the finish. Drink now through 2027. 300 cases made.

91 points Vinous

 (91+) Bright, dark red. Aromatic scents of anise, red licorice, black pepper and herbs on the nose; more salty than fruity. Suave and juicy in the mouth, with enough raspberry fruit to support the pepper and herb elements. This silky wine conveys a very sexy soil-driven character and complicating salinity. No easy sweetness here but the finish shows excellent length and lift. The tightest of these three single-vineyard Pinots, finishing with a firm tannic spine. This should evolve gracefully in bottle and may ultimately merit an even higher score.

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Price: $49.99

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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