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Escarpment 2005 Kupe Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
Since its debut in 2003, this has been one of New Zealand’s top Pinot Noirs, combining power, structure and complexity. Smoky and richly peppery at first, it turns more floral with aeration, and while it’s big in the mouth, it’s also silky in texture. The black cherry, plum, vanilla and spice flavors fan out on the…
Escarpment 2003 Kupe Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
Impressively big, rich and well extracted, with bold black cherry flavors, but also complex hints of cinnamon and other spices, floral notes and a pleasant herbal tinge to the softly tannic finish. Approachable now, but probably better in 3–4 years. Just 500 cases produced. Imported by Meadowbank Estates.
Escarpment 2007 Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
Larry McKenna continues to show his masterful touch with Martinborough Pinot with his latest release. The 2007 is full-bodied and velvety, practically lush in the mouth, and filled with black cherry, plum, cola and sassafras flavors, with additional herbal complexity hinted at on the long, mouthwatering finish.
Escarpment 2009 Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
The Escarpment style is always one of ample ripeness, weight and structure, and the 2009 measures up to the winery’s previous successes. Plummy fruit is tinged with a dark chocolate note, while the palate is richly textured, and the finish is long and velvety. Drink now–2018.
Escarpment 2008 Pahi Single Vineyard Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
One of the interesting things about Larry McKenna’s 2008 Pinots is that they show differently every time I taste them. So these reviews are composites of the 2–3 times I’ve tried each one. The Pahi shows big bold fruit but also touches of mineral, herb and subtle spice, while the finish is long and savory.
Escarpment 2005 Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
This is like a scaled-down version of the Kupe bottling—or is that one a scaled-up version of this wine? Smoky and peppery notes mark the nose, framing black cherry and plum flavors in a wire cage of cured meats, yet the texture is supple and silky. Drink now-2012.
Escarpment 2008 Over the Edge Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
At less than one-third the price of Escarpment’s single-vineyard wines, this is a great Pinot Noir value. Ripe cherries and plums make a full impression on the palate, and while the flavors could use a touch more complexity, the wine offers a big mouthful of authentic Pinot Noir.
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Escarpment 2008 Kiwa Pinot Noir (Martinborough)
Big and powerful without going completely over the edge, the 2008 Kiwa is a dark-fruited wine with hints of dried fruit and Christmas spices. It’s full bodied, rich and almost chewy in texture, yet finishes fresh and long.