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Te Hera Estate Pinot Noir 2020

 The label of ‘boutique’ wine producers is often banded about, more often than not missing the mark for what a true boutique producer is or should be. Te Hera Estate in Martinborough New Zealand is unquestionably a proper boutique winery, with John Douglas the owner and winemaker at the helm, and with just 3 wines hand crafted in quantities of just a couple of thousand bottles a year.

 The latest releases from Te Hera include just two Pinot Noir’s, with the little brother being the newly labelled Te Hera Estate Pinot Noir 2020. Previously this was under the Kiritea name, but this new vintage retains much of the characteristics of its former name. It is made as a slightly earlier drinker than the reserve with less oaking, but don’t be fooled this is still a high class act. Martinborough Pinot’s are still a niche area, but provide fantastic quality at a much reduced price point to their equivalent kiwi wines from Central Otago. The big thing to remember is all Pinot’s are not equal and although I love NZ Pinot, as soon as comparisons to Burgundy begin to creep in, disappointment looms!

 This 2020 is beautifully fragrant with strawberry and raspberry on the nose, and surprisingly already very open at this young age. The palate is balanced and medium bodied with a herbaceous quality which couples with elements of brambly blackberry, slightly green, and subtle minty tones. The tannins are soft and refined adding to the ability to access this wine almost immediately, I enjoyed along with a homemade lasagne and offered up plenty to make this equally enjoyable by the glass or with food. In terms of ageing and reflecting back to earlier incarnations, there is no doubt there is enough here to continue to develop and reward extra time in the bottle, probably up to 7 years would be my guess, in which time the wine will  evolve beautifully.


MD 90/100