2020 Ata Rangi, Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand

2020 Ata Rangi, Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand

Product: 20208115359
Prices start from £490.00 per case Buying options
2020 Ata Rangi, 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.
Case format
Price per case
6 x 75cl bottle
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Ata Rangi Pinot Noir offers a wonderfully comforting glass of wine. Ripe fruit without being extracted and structured but very accessible. 2020 was a very stable vintage, and enjoyed everything you would hope for throughout the whole growing season, striking the harmony of low rainfall and sufficient heat without unwanted extremes. 

Made from only the oldest Pinot Noir plantings on the Martinborough Terrace, this wine is the best of six small vineyards, all within 500m of the winery. The result is a complex, elegant wine, beautifully perfumed in the classic Ata Rangi style.

Offering stunning value, the Ata Rangi would be a wine to choose when you need a little pick me up. By its nature, it’s enjoyable and a pleasure to match with most foods. The fresh acidity makes it great with pork, chicken, and a range of summer salads. 

A very exciting match is hoisin duck bao buns! The acidity and red fruit engage beautifully with the sweet, fatty, and rich duck—a real treat and very unusual.

Chris Hanssen, Account Manager, Berry Bros. & Rudd (June 2023)

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Critics reviews

Rebecca Gibb MW, Vinous96/100

The 2020 Pinot Noir reminds me of walking into a cathedral - that quiet, cool hush that falls as you walk through its doors. This is harmonious, supple, unshowy and unforced. Hailing from old vines and delicately textured despite the abundance of fruit concentration. Refined tannins with the finest of gravelly textures, akin to licking a stone. Scented yet restrained, with a fragrance of sweet red fruit, tea leaf and cedar spices with persistent acidity that carries it. Very complete and already approachable.

Drink 2023 - 2038

Rebecca Gibb MW, Vinous.com (January 2023)

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Jancis Robinson MW16.5/20

Much bluer than the McCrone. Pale rim. Gentle Pinot nose with definite fruit and charm. A little sweetness and then quite a bit of tannin. Still youthful?

Blend of fruit from many blocks. Certified organic (BioGro). 40% whole bunch. Aged for 12 months in 228-litre barrels (25% new) then 6 months in tank.

Drink 2024 - 2030

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com (February 2023)

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James Suckling98/100

A beautiful nose of sliced strawberries, crushed cherries, violets, grated nutmeg and a hint of white pepper. Some hibiscus, too. Supremely vibrant and perfumed with fine tannins that run the length of the medium-bodied palate. Textural. Ground spice and fresh fruit are intertwined, providing wonderful depth and complexity. So long as well. Seamless balance. Superb. Sustainable.

Drink or hold

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com (June 2023)

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Wine Enthusiast95/100

This is a classic expression of this renowned winery's estate vines, now over 40 years old, on alluvial gravels. It opens with a rich bouquet of heady spices, dried florals, cherry cola and cinnamon bark, and there's some vanillin oak influence, too. There's density and concentration to the palate. It walks a tightrope of power and elegance, with chiseled, distinctly textured tannins and finely tuned oak.

Drink now with protein and until 2033, at least!

Christina Pickard, Wine Enthusiast (June 2023)

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The Real Review98/100

Concentrated, complex pinot noir with cassis, blackberry, dark cherry, violet, wood smoke and savoury/dried herb flavours. Accessible now but with a proven history of ageing gracefully. Elegant wine with impressive power.

Bob Campbell MW, The Real Review (June 2023)

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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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