Visiting Villa Maria in Marlborough-Part 2

This is the second of a two-part series about our wonderful time at Villa Maria‘s Cellar Door in Marlborough, New Zealand. Our host, winemaker Kathrin (Kat) Jankowiec, is talented, creative, knowledgeable and friendly. We couldn’t have asked for a better experience at the most-awarded winery in New Zealand.

And the wines are magnificent. Kat poured nine for us, ranging in price from $16-$43. Read on for more details. And then, head out to your nearest retailer that sells Villa Maria wine to pick up a few bottles. Of note, Ste. Michelle Wine Estates is a distribution partner for Villa Maria, therefore many wines are readily available in the U.S.

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Craggy Range

I don’t often write about wines from New Zealand, but I’m making an exception for this one: Craggy Range 2009 Te Muna Road Pinot Noir 2009. This exquisite 100% Pinot received 94 points from the Wine Advocate, and we understand why.

The 2009 Pinot Noir is an elegant, silky and complex wine, which showcases that year’s strong growing season in the Te Muna Road Vineyard, one of two estate properties owned by Craggy Range in New Zealand. The 33-hectare vineyard is planted with eight clones of Pinot Noir in the cool-climate region of Martinborough.

From the tasting notes:
“A bright and deep rosey red. Fragrant aromatics of red fruits, plum, tree bark, a variety of flowers, spice and earth. 2009 is a year of seamless structure, satin tannins and gentle supporting acidity. The palate is pure, long, very finely textured. The lush mid palate holds a mix of red berries, violets, ruby grapefruit, liquorice and exotic spice. The wine finishes with length, poise and delightful focus.”

As with most Pinots, Te Muna Road can be paired with salmon, pork or lamb. We might end up matching it with two out of three. Seriously.

We started discovering wines from New Zealand, after tasting some of that country’s refreshing Sauvignon Blancs over the summer. The bottle of Craggy Range Te Muna Road 2009 Pinot Noir that we tasted was sent as a sample, but it’s one that we would definitely purchase in the future.

Cheers!