My favourite tweet from over the weekend summed it up nicely – ‘Massive Pinot Noir lovefest today at Glengarry wine’ (thanks Anna Flowerday). Last Friday and Saturday saw the first rendition of what will definitely become an annual event at Glengarry Victoria Park – a massive Pinot Noir tasting. In two sessions, each of three hours in duration, over 100 Pinot Noir from around the world were on offer. All the Pinot Noir on offer were part of Glengarry’s range and an overriding comment from all that attended was the collective quality of all the wines. The quality did not stop there, we were also joined by many of NZ’s leading winemakers; to have that many in one space is unprecedented. A big thank you needs to go out to all those winemakers who ‘just’ (Duncan at Mt Edward brought the last fruit in Friday morning and jumped on a plane) finished vintage and joined us.
OK, so the wines themselves, what stood out? It’s a hard thing to taste that many top quality wines, who all deservedly have a spot on our shelves. However, I did manage to group together some observations that might just assist.
The other winemakers choice
So I noticed clearly there was one part of the room where all the winemakers in the room gathered between pouring their own wines. Now either it was Larry’s ‘Australian wit’ or the quality of Mr Pinot’s wines. The Escarpment Wines, from the unwooded fruit forward style of The Edge to the high percentage whole bunch, no fining, filtered complex style of Kupe, were outstanding. It could be the vintage being offered that drew all the winemakers? 2012 was not a vintage that all producers in Martinborough made, something Larry maintains was a mistake. Tasting Larry’s 2012 Escarpment Wines over the weekend, I can concur with Larry’s thinking.
Any of the team at Glengarry will tell you that I’m just a tad obsessed by the quality of some of the sub regions of Marlborough. I also think that Marlborough has some exceptional value Pinot Noir’s that get a tad over shadowed. The overriding comment from customers tasting Friday and Saturday ranged from “I’ve never heard of Tupari – do you realise how good it is?’ to “Did you taste the Ara wines – they are actually brilliant” – really –we’d never have guessed! Oh and Marisco – “we never knew these were so good and Brent Marris is lovely….” As for Jackson Estate – these were probably the Marlborough wines that surprised customers the most and certainly topped our sales for the weekend.
Best to look a little closer
There are many producers that are better known for things other than Pinot Noir. Coopers Creek is one such producer, if you think Coopers you’d probably be thinking Sauvignon, hopefully Swamp Road Chardonnay and maybe varietals like Arneis, Albarino and all the other gems Simon has mastered. Simon Nunns is one talented winemaker and it is not any surprise that his Pinot Noir are so good – value too.
Organic and Biodynamic
Lots of options on offer including TWR, poured by owner and winemaker Anna Flowerday. Anna is not only super passionate about Biodynamics, but Pinot Noir. A wine well worth seeking out.