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Astrolabe Province Pinot Noir 2010

Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
  • WS92
0% ABV
  • JS91
  • WS92
  • WW91
  • WE90
  • W&S90
  • WS91
  • JS91
  • WE90
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Winemaker Notes

#60 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2013

The 2010 Astrolabe Pinot Noir has bright deep garnet color. On the nose,savory ripe plum and dark cherry, with a hint of smoky oak. On the palate, full bodied wine with round, mouth filling flavors of plum, brambly fruit and dark cherry. The oak integrates nicely with the fruit, and combines well with the silky tannin structure.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 92
Wine Spectator
Features intoxicating aromatics of orange zest, dried lavender and fresh, peppery earth notes, with a succulent, juicy core of raspberry and strawberry. Supple in texture, with the flavors lingering on the fresh, juicy finish.
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Astrolabe

Astrolabe

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Astrolabe, Marlborough, New Zealand
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When winemaker Simon Waghorn created his own brand, he chose the name Astrolabe because of historic ties with Marlborough and connotations of exploration and discovery. An astrolabe is an ancient instrument of navigation that measures the altitude of the stars, and also the name of an early sailing ship exploring the Marlborough coast.

All Simon’s skill and experience combine to capture the essence of Marlborough in wines of purity, focus and elegance. Simon is fascinated by the unique qualities of the Awatere Valley and Kekerengu Coast sub-regions, whether bottled alone, or blended as part of the Marlborough classic.

Marlborough

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Home to perhaps the world’s most easily recognizable Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough has a unique terroir that lends a unifying thread to all of its wines. But despite common misconceptions, the wines from this region at the northern tip of New Zealand’s South Island are anything but homogenous. With well-draining stony soils and a dry, sunny climate, the vineyards of Marlborough benefit from wide temperature fluctuations between day and night, which helps to preserve natural acidity in their fruit.

The region’s specialty, Sauvignon Blanc, is beloved for its pungent, aromatic character with notes of exotic tropical fruit, freshly cut grass, and green bell pepper along with a refreshing streak of stony minerality. These wines are made in a wide range of styles, and winemakers take advantage of various clones and vineyards sites as well as fermentation, lees-stirring, and aging regimens to differentiate their bottlings from one another. Also produced successfully here are fruit-forward Pinot Noirs, elegant Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Gewürztraminer, and a wide range of Chardonnay styles, as well as more experimental varieties like Grüner Veltliner and Syrah.

Pinot Noir

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One of the most difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is commonly referred to by winemakers as the “heartbreak grape.” However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. More reflective than most varieties of the land on which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality, and demands care in the vineyard and lots of attention in the winery. It is an important component of Champagne and the only variety permitted in red Burgundy. Pinot Noir enjoys immense popularity internationally, most notably in Oregon, California, and New Zealand.

In the Glass

Pinot Noir Is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry, and cherry. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and lively acidity. It ranges in body from very light to the heavier side of medium, typically landing somewhere in the middle—giving it extensive possibilities for food pairing. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount), it can develop hauntingly beautiful characteristics of fresh earth, autumn leaves, and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon, ocean trout, and tuna. Its mild mannered tannins don’t fight with spicy food, and give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry—chicken, quail, and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, it can even match with heavier fare. Pinot Noir is also very vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

Pinot Noir is dangerously drinkable, highly addictive, and has a bad habit of emptying the wallet. Look for affordable but still delicious examples from Germany (as Spätburgunder), Italy (as Pinot Nero), Chile, New Zealand, and France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions.

FBR110980_2010 Item# 128008