A large proportion of the wine I choose to drink comes from the Pinot Noir grape, and a significant proportion of that hails from New Zealand’s celebrated Marlborough region.
Indeed, a glance at that tag shows I’ve reviewed no fewer than three such bottles for this very website over the last couple of years. Twice I even chose to photograph the bottle next to the same ornamental plate, though the less said about that the better.
Of the nineteen bottles of Pinot Noir I’ve reviewed for this website, a couple have been a bit iffy, and perhaps one or two I simply have not liked. I don’t recall off-hand whether any of these were from New Zealand – I suspect not – but I know for a fact that I have yet to taste a Pinot Noir from Marlborough that was anything less than great.
Thank you Allan Scott family winemakers for not letting the side down. I was sent this bottle from the extensive Pinot Noir range at Fine Wines Direct UK, and it has all the hallmarks of a great Marlborough Pinot Noir: a light-red hue (pretty much the colour I like my Vimto, in fact); heady aromas of redcurrants, raspberry, strawberry – much less farmy than a lot of Pinots, which many people will like; and a full-flavoured mouthful of cherries and berries – well-rounded with a pleasing oakiness, little acidity, and a thick velvety texture.
It’s the best Pinot Noir style, in my opinion. And while it is almost certianly replicated, and possibly even bettered occasionally, in other New Zealand areas such as Central Otago and Martinborough, I can’t help feeling that the availability and consistent quality of Marlborough’s Pinot Noirs makes it an all-round best-bet for value for money.
Allan Scott’s estate Pinot Noir is available from Fine Wines Direct UK for the very reasonable price of £12.99, and if you want to brush up on your winemaking knowledge there’s some detailed descriptions of production techniques on the estate website.