Ata Rangi Pinot Noir 2003
"The wine has the fruitiness of a blue-foot mushroom, a dark and savory character to balance the clean line of black cherry flavour running through it. Spice tracks that cherry fruit, a third rail to electrify the woodsy earthiness of the wine. The flavours are long, attesting to Martinborough's talents with Pinot Noir." - Wine & Spirits, Feb 2005
He was one of a handful of winemaking pioneers in Martinborough, then a forgotten rural settlement, who were attracted to the area by two key features - the localised, free-draining shingle terrace some 20 metres deep and the lowest rainfall records of anywhere on the North Island of New Zealand.
Today Martinborough is a thriving wine appellation with an international reputation, particularly for premium Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Today Ata Rangi concentrates on hand making world class wines, namely pinot noir, sauvignon blanc and their Celebre (a cabernet blend). Yields are very low, typically 2 tonnes per acre and all grapes are hand-picked. Vines are now 20 years old, a factor in the wines ascending quality. Winemaking is very traditional using small, closed fermenters with wide top manholes which allow hand plunging. 20 hectares of vines are managed from which around 80 tonnes are crushed annually.