2012 Ata Rangi Pinot Noir, Martinborough
Ata Rangi produces two Pinot Noirs: an earlier-drinking style called ‘Crimson’ and their premium example tasted here, simply called ‘Pinot Noir’. Both are grown on estate vineyards in the Martinborough region of New Zealand.
The estate possesses several vineyards of Pinot Noir, all fermented separately. Once the wines are made, the best lots are blended to make the premium Pinot or first label, from older vines aged 10 to 30 years. Younger vines, producing more fruit-driven and less age-worthy wines are generally assembled to form the ‘Crimson’. You can read a review of Ata Rangi’s second label with our tasting notes of the 2013 Crimson Pinot Noir.
2012 vintage was marked by a cold spring and overall cold season in Martinborough, delaying ripeness. The vintage was ‘saved’ however by a remarkably lenient harvest season or ‘Indian summer’. The later allowed to finish the ripening of the fruit, eliminating most green characteristics yet preserving acidity thanks to cold nights.
For further information about the producer, visit Ata Rangi’s profile page.
Color: garnet, medium intensity for a Pinot, a fair bit of colour, quite dark but not overly dense.
Nose: subtle yet powerful. Very complex, a very large array of flavours mixed beautifully: Dark cherry, dark chocolate, blackberry, Cassis, clove, vanilla, nutmeg, smoke, spices. A touch of vegetal character that freshens up the nose, while earthy notes give it depth. Integrated quality oak perceptible.
Palate: Straight away, acidity strikes. This is a wine whose backbone is acidity. Quite a light body, fine tannins teasing the sides of the palate, slight rusticity. Palate dominated by fresh fruit flavours, boysenberries, Myrtille. Clove again, and nutmeg. You can feel a certain earthyness is there, but hidden by the youth of the fruit at this stage. Vegetal characteristics present, feels like it was fermented with stems.
A very good wine, too young to drink now. This is a wine built for ageing, with a bit of rusticity at present from extraction on not-too-ripe fruit. It will age beautifully though, given the acidity and the amount of fresh fruit to support its evolution. All elements of a great future complexity are there: spices, earth. Drink in 3 to 10 years.
Further info on atarangi.co.nz
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