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: Martinborough Vineyard

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Martinborough Vineyard

www.martinborough-vineyard.co.nz

Princess St, PO Box 85, Martinborough

Ph: +64 6 306 9955

Martinbrough Vineyard is one of the pioneering vineyards in the region. A 1978 government report found that the region was New Zealand's closest thing to Burgundy. One of the authors of the report, Dr. Derek Mine, showed conviction in his report and established 16 acres with the financial backing of five other shareholders.

The original vineyard was planted in 1980 with Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Gurwertztraminer grapes. The first commercial vintage was 1984.

Former Delgats (Auckland) winemaker, Larry McKenna, became the winemaker here in 1986, and soon was the CEO. Under McKenna the Pinot Noir became the region's flagship with many international awards. McKenna has been widely dubbed New Zealand's king of Pinot, and even gets involved in Pinot Noir wine-making across the Tasman in Victoria's Mornington Peninsula.

In 1998 McKenna left to set up his own winery in the region (Escarpment) and puruse his other Pinot Noir projects.

Paul Mason is the new chief winemaker and has worked in Italy, Chile, Australia and Hawke's Bay.

The viticultural team, led by the recently appointed Peter Wilkins, is looking to improve the soil health though making them biologically and fungi abundant.

Tasting Notes

There are three types of Tasting notes:

(W) Notes from the winery (blurbs from bottle)

(GXY) Notes from a GenXY wine reviewer

(G) Notes from GenXY's Tasting events (collective opinions)

New reviews

Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Noir 2013

Purchased: Not ($80)

Drink: 2019

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2016, hot vintage but quite floral red cherry and dark plum with liquorice, dried herb and violet notes, concentrated, forestry and earthy medium bodied palate, powdery with firm acidity and smoky, savoury oak (****)

Martinborough Vineyard Te Tera Pinot Noir 2014

Purchased: Not ($35)

Drink: 2018

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2016, second label from younger vines, glossy and fleshy red cherry and sweet plum with anise and dried thyme notes, medium bodied with fine powdery tannins and toasty mocha/cinnamon oak (***1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011

Purchased: Not ($A70/$NZ68)

Drink: †2018

(GXY) Tasting: Dec 2015, †Abel. UCD 5, 115 and 10//5 clones, †modestly floral red cherry and dark plum, supple, long and medium bodied palate with developed forest floor development and earthiness, peppery spices and a dusting of herbs, †fine †velvety savoury tannins (****)

Martinborough Vineyard Te Tera †Pinot Noir 2013

Purchased: Not ($A33)

Drink: †2017

(GXY) Tasting: Dec 2015, from younger 8 - 23 year old vines, †sllky and sweetly fruited red cherry and sweet plum with anise and thyme notes, medium bodied with earthy undertones, fresh acidity with assertive toasty mocha/cinnamon oak (***1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Chardonnay 2011

Purchased: Not ($A35)

Drink: 2015

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2013, rich, leesy and fuller bodied showing white peach, lime and tangerine with biscuit and butterscotch notes, toasty hazelnut/vanilla oak, flinty lemon rind acidity provides the balance (****)† /p>

Martinborough Vineyard† Pinot Noir 2010

Purchased: Not ($A75/$NZ70)

Drink: 2015

(GXY) Tasting:† Oct 2012, perfumed, smooth and glossy red cherry and dark plum with asian spice, anise , dried herb †and rose petal notes, medium bodied, subdued primary †fruit expression with rather secondary earthy aspects coming to the fore, velvety tannins, a touch of dark chocolate and toasty oak spice on finish, lacks enough drive to rate higher (***1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Noir 2009

Purchased: Not ($A80)

Drink: 2017

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, not fined or filtered, multi-clonal, firm red cherry and dark plum with bracken, asian spice, anise and rose petal notes, slightly subdued fruit expression with rather earthy and vegetal aspects dominating, girdled with linear, savoury oak tannins, nervy and tangy acidity, a touch of dark chocolate on finish, the antithesis of a Kiwi fruit-bomb but Iím not totally convinced how this vintage will develop in the cellar (****)

Martinborough Vineyard Chardonnay 2009

Purchased: Not ($A40)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, rich, leesy and slightly waxy peach, lemon butter, paw paw and melon with some biscuit and butterscotch notes, the toasty vanilla/hazelnut/caramel oak is neatly counter balanced with some flinty lemon rind acidity (****)

Martinborough Vineyard Te Tera Pinot Noir 2011

Purchased: Not ($A32)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, 100% destemmed, sweet entry level style from younger vines showing bright red cherry, plum and strawberry with liquorice, dried herb and mint notes, fresh acidity with finely grained tannin and overt coffee/cinnamon/vanilla oak (***1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2011

Purchased: Not ($A23)

Drink: 2013

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, 20% barrel ferment, creamy passionfruit, lime and cut grass with some capsicum and asparagus but less pungent than a typical Marlborough savvie, chalky texture with a touch of vanilla on the zesty finish (***1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Chardonnay 2006

Purchased: Not ($40)

Drink: 2011

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2009, based on the original Mendoza clone vines established 26 years go but supplemented with 5 other clones, complex and well focussed wine showing stonefruit, nectarine with butterscotch and paw paw nuances, the creamy palate has baked bread and slightly waxy aspects reflecting the array of lees, barrel ferment and malo inputs, avoids the staleness of many over-worked Chardonnays with refreshing grapefruit acidity and spicy toasty French oak (****1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006

Purchased: Not ($75)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2009, this richly flavoured and perfumed wine is based on 10 different clones, fairly concentrated black cherry, raspberry and boysenberry flavours, spicy, sculptured and medium-full bodied palate with chalky minerality, lingering silky tannins and lightly charred French oak gives a lush, smoky finish (****)

Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Noir 2004

Purchased: Not ($75)

Drink: 2013

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2006, elegant more austere style than the Te Tera, nose is a bit closed, red and black cherry with a hint of tamarillo, savoury and gamey palate shows mushroom, pepper and chocolate notes, cigar box oak features, lingering finish and great balance, will drink well now but the track record shows that complex, secondary features will fully mature with long term careful cellaring (****1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Gris 2005

Purchased: Not ($40)

Drink: 2008

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2006, straw-yellow colour, richer Grigio style, spicy pear with rounded full bodied palate and herbal notes, well balanced crisp acid, some barrel ferment (****)

Martinborough Vineyard Te Tera Pinot Noir 2004

Purchased: Not ($45)

Drink: 2012

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2006, fragrant red cherry with a hint of tamarillo, bright fruit definition on the savoury and earthy palate that also shows pepper and faint chocolate notes, regional smoky cigar box oak features (***1/2)

Martinborough Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2006

Purchased: Not ($27)

Drink: 2007

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2006, lighter, dry style with restrained gooseberry and passionfruit and some grassiness, dry minerally finish (***)