2016 Ata Rangi, McCrone Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand

2016 Ata Rangi, McCrone Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand

Product: 20168014144
Prices start from £476.00 per case Buying options
2016 Ata Rangi, McCrone Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand

Buying options

Available by the case In Bond. Pricing excludes duty and VAT, which must be paid separately before delivery. Storage charges apply.
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6 x 75cl bottle
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The 2016 McCrone Vineyard Pinot Noir is leafy and savory, with dark cherry fruit in the background. It's medium to full-bodied, rich and tannic on the palate, with a long, velvety finish. Give this a year or two to come into its own, then drink it over the next decade. 2020 – 2030
Joe Czerwinski, The Wine Advocate

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Critics reviews

Wine Advocate93/100
The 2016 McCrone Vineyard Pinot Noir is leafy and savory, with dark cherry fruit in the background. It's medium to full-bodied, rich and tannic on the palate, with a long, velvety finish. Give this a year or two to come into its own, then drink it over the next decade. 2020 – 2030
Joe Czerwinski, The Wine Advocate Read more
Jancis Robinson MW17.5/20
Pale ruby with some black tints. Crunchy blackberry and violets, herb and earth. Firm tannins, juicy acidity, spice, pepper and earth. Salty tang. Tense and tightly wound. Great wine.
Tim Jackson MW, jancisrobinson.com (February 2019) Read more
James Suckling96/100
This has richness and a riper feel than the ‘regular’ Ata Rangi pinot bottling and offers red to dark cherries, delivered in a style that has plenty of structure and more muscular tannin texture. The palate has a sleek feel and a finely detailed and attractive, long draw on the spicy finish. Drink or hold. Screw cap.
James Suckling Read more

About this WINE

Ata Rangi

Ata Rangi

Ata Rangi is amongst the top ranks of New Zealand red wine producers. The name translates as "dawning sky" or "new beginning," and this is what it represented to Clive Paton, a dairy farmer who settled in Martinborough in 1980. Located at the southern end of the North Island, it is owned and managed by the family trio - Clive, his wife Phyll, and his sister Alison. The property consisted of a rather barren-looking 5-hectare paddock when he purchased it. He was attracted by the free-draining shingle terraces and the fact that Martinborough receives less rainfall than any other region in the North Island.

Clive planted his first vines on a small, stony sheep paddock at the edge of the Martinborough village in 1980 as one of a handful of people who pioneered wine growing in the area. 20 years later all of the wines are on strict allocation with demand far exceeding supply. The Pinot Noir is world-class and displays a structure and depth of fruit seldom encountered outside Burgundy. Célèbre is an intriguing blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah, which is a powerful and complex wine with very good ageing potential. A high-quality Chardonnay is also produced.

Ata Rangi Pinot Noir is undoubtedly the flagship wine, and in 2010 was honored with the inaugural Tipuranga Teitei o Aotearoa or "Grand Cru of New Zealand." With a skilled team in place, including dynamic winemaker Helen Masters, Ata Rangi continues to lead the field. Their Pinots often remain delicious even beyond 10 years old.

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Close to the southern tip of North Island, some top-class, aromatic Pinot Noir is being made in the sleepy town of Martinborough, with the best rivalling good Burgundy. Compared to the hustle and bustle of Marlborough, the pocket-sized Wairarapa district – with Martinborough at its head – comes across less as a wine-producing region, accounting as it does for three-point-five percent of the country's vines, and more like a cottage industry. Much of this is perhaps down to the compact size of its favoured old-Martinborough terrace with its gravely, sandy, alluvial soils, located an hour's drive east of the country's capital, Wellington.

Another factor is the nature of the winegrowers themselves, often holding down a professional career during the week, and tending their vines at the weekends; so more therapy than husbandry, reflected perhaps in the relatively high land values, making commercial viticulture a tricky proposition. Added to which, and despite being in a rain shadow, this south-eastern corner of North Island is constantly at the mercy of the icy south-easterlies spinning off the Antarctic, bringing frosts five or six times a year, from flowering through to harvest. Pinot Noir yields are therefore often at the 25-30 hl/ha mark.

Just as Cloudy Bay launched a hundred wineries in Marlborough, so it could be argued that Dry River Wines and Ata Rangi provided the spark that lit up Martinborough. While the region's history dates back to the first commercial vintage of 1893, Prohibition intervened, followed by Marlborough's debut, hence Dry River's inaugural vintage was only in 1979, with Clive Paton releasing Ata Rangi in 1985.

Much of the initial buzz surrounding the region came from the Abel or `Gumboot' clone of Pinot Noir whose origins apparently lie in a certain Romanée-Conti vineyard. During the 1960s or 1970s, a cutting was allegedly smuggled into New Zealand via a gumboot, discovered by the then customs officer Malcolm Abel who in turn propagated it on the quiet before releasing it to Ata Rangi. To this day, one sniff of a barrel of Abel Pinot Noir conjures up visions of Musigny – something evidently not lost on Nigel Greening, who planted most of his Cornish Point vineyard with it.

Though Pinot Noir put the region on the map and continues to turn heads in the hands of Dr Neil McCallum (Dry River), Clive Paton (Ata Rangi), and, more recently, Chris Archer of Alana Estate, economically the region is arguably better-suited to Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and even Gewürztraminer. Unlike Marlborough, or Burgundy for that matter, this region has to juggle several varieties to make ends meet – not an easy task. The regional style is dark plum and chocolate black fruit, with a savouriness akin to meat.

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Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is probably the most frustrating, and at times infuriating, wine grape in the world. However when it is successful, it can produce some of the most sublime wines known to man. This thin-skinned grape which grows in small, tight bunches performs well on well-drained, deepish limestone based subsoils as are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or.

Pinot Noir is more susceptible than other varieties to over cropping - concentration and varietal character disappear rapidly if yields are excessive and yields as little as 25hl/ha are the norm for some climats of the Côte d`Or.

Because of the thinness of the skins, Pinot Noir wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However the best wines have grip, complexity and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, redolent with freshly crushed raspberries, cherries and redcurrants. When mature, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouth feel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey "sous-bois" nuances emerging.

The best examples are still found in Burgundy, although Pinot Noir`s key role in Champagne should not be forgotten. It is grown throughout the world with notable success in the Carneros and Russian River Valley districts of California, and the Martinborough and Central Otago regions of New Zealand.

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