'Epicentre' Pinot Noir, Ward Valley, New Zealand

Country : New Zealand

Grape Variety : Pinot Noir

An elegant, well balanced Pinot Noir from the cool, Southerly Ward Valley in Marlborough. Smooth and silky in texture, with soft, ripe red fruit flavours and just a hint of smokiness.

Tasting Note : Dark cherry fruit and red berry aromas dominate the nose. On the palate the wine shows lovely finesse, with red cherries, strawberries and blackcurrant fruit, and a touch of warm, vanilla oak on the finish.

Food Pairing : Coq au vin, ripe cheeses, roast pork, grilled red meats.

More info : The temperamental Pinot Noir grape performs particularly well in the cool vineyards of New Zealand's South Island. This varietal needs to keep cool to retain its balance and finesse, and the Ward Valley offers it perfect growing conditions. 'Epicentre' is so called because the vineyard was shaken by a significant earthquake in November 2016. Luckily, damage was limited, but the experience inspired the Ward Valley team to name their wine after this extraordinary natural event. Winemaking for this wine focuses on extracting as much beautiful, perfumed fruit as possible, and only 20% is aged in oak, allowing the exotic red fruit characters of the grape to sing.

Winery : This small, 20 hectare estate was initially planted in 2008 by fourth generation South Islander, Freddie Davison. He selected this area for development because of its cool climate, high altitude, dry air temperature and deep, clay soils. This classic combination of features results in unusual finesse and complexity in the wines, and gives them a real individual stamp. Along with viticulturist James Leary and consultant winemaker, David Clouston, Freddie is continuing to invest in the area to ensure that the most modern techniques result in the healthiest, best quality grapes and the freshest, most elegant wines.