Bästa Pinot Noir från Nya Zeeland – Ara Wines

Dinvinguide.se besökte nyligen London och mässan NZ Annual Tasting, vilket i korta drag var en heldag med ett stort antal utställande vinmakare/vinhus från Nya Zeeland.
Med månadens tema i bakhuvudet så riktade jag mig främst in på att prova Pinot Noir.
Från Nya Zeeland finns det mycket bra vin och under månaden kan du följa Sofia som skriver om sin rundresa där och vilka Pinot Noir viner hon har mött på plats.
Jag har valt ut det vinhus som imponerade mest på mig under mässan, nämligen ARA winery.
Efter mässan så tog jag kontakt med deras vinmakare Jeff per mail för att ställa några frågor, som du hittar längre ned i artikeln.
Dinvinguide.se fick även tillåtelse att dela med sig av ett av deras recept på lamm med vinmatchning som du hittar längst ned i artikeln.

Här är mina noteringar på ARA´s Pinot Noir viner
Importör i Sverige: Arvid Nordquist

Pinot Noir Selected Blocks 2012
SB# 2013, Pris 151:-
Direkt frukt med röda inslag av bär och en härlig tillgänglighet med balanserad syra och lång eftersmak med mjuka tanniner.

Single Estate 2012
SB# 75603, Pris 147:-
Elegant rund frukt med toner av mogna röda bär samt integrerad syra och lång eftersmak.

Resolute 2012 Pinot Noir
SB# 90612, Pris 249:-
Resolute är kraftigt allokerad, finns några kvar ute i butik men även 26 lådor hos importören så skynda detta är ett fynd för pengarna.
Vinet innehåller 62% M 62, 54% K 54 samt 36% K 36, som är olika växtplatser av Pinot Noir och som även vinifieras separat se noteringar nedan.
Resolute är ett absolut fantastiskt vin med härliga röda bär, örtighet, kakao, generös balanserad syra och mjuka härliga tanniner som ger en lång smak och upplevelse med lager efter lager av elegans i munnen.

M 62
Sval elegant frukt med mjuka tanniner, integrerad syra och mer ljusa röda bär.

K 54
Inbjudande vin med tydlig jordighet och inslag av örter och röda frukter med mjuka tanniner och medellång smak.

K 36
Elegant och rund bärighet med toner av mogna jordgubbar, krita samt viss örtighet.
Integrerad syra och lång eftersmak.

Oyster Bay Pinot Noir 2013
Röd ljus frukt med bäriga toner, medelfyllig smak, mjuka tanniner och integrerad syra.

ara winery 6

Vinmakaren Jeff Clarke är internationellt erkänd.
Han har spelat en nyckelroll i utvecklingen av Marlboroughs världsberömda Sauvignon Blanc, och de nya Pinot Noir-vinerna från Nya Zeeland.

Jeff har vunnit många utmärkelser som bl.a. International Winemaker of the Year i London 1999 och igen i Japan 2003. Jeff sitter ofta med och dömer vin i olika tävlingar.
En av Storbritanniens kanske mest erkända vinjournalister Tim Atkin har satt Jeff i sin topp sex vinproducenter i världen-lista 2006.

Jeff har varit inblandad i att skapa över 35 årgångar vin, och har med det övervakat skapandet av en större mängd olika viner än någon annan vinmakare från Nya Zeeland.

Han avslutade sin B. App. Sc. examen i oenologi, Vintillverkning och vinodling på Roseworthy Agricultural College i Australien 1979. Hans yrkeskarriär började på Penfolds i Barossa Valley. Jeff flyttade till Nya Zeeland 1993.

ARA Winery
Barrel Hall_& Bottle 346A_Jeff

Intervju med Jeff Clarke:
Where do you get your inspiration?
Inspiration for Ara wines, comes from our outstanding surroundings. As you will see in the photos attached, our part of Marlborough is magnificent in its grandeur. High mountain ranges, lush forestry and purity of the air all add together to make the intensity of fruit flavours in our grapes stand out. My job as a winemaker in this region is essentially to make sure that I transfer the character of the grapes through into the wine with minimal interference. This is particularly true of our key grape variety, Sauvignon Blanc. Of course with Pinot Noir, there is more winemaking input and artefact that adds complexity, but still at its heart is the lifted aromatics and ripe soft flavours we obtain from our single estate fruit.

We do benchmark ourselves on the classic wines of Europe, such as Sancerre/ Pouilly Fume for Sauvignon Blanc, Alsace for Pinot Gris and of course Burgundy for Pinot Noir. However, we at Ara always want to have our wines carry the stamp of our special place in New Zealand.

What would you say is the most important grape for NZ wines in general now and in the future?
Sauvignon Blanc is the still the bread and butter of the New Zealand wine industry, especially for exports. Since its introduction to the world in the early 1990’s Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc has taken the international market by storm. It is still reaching new customers abroard and gaining new followers with its varietal intensity, its freshness and its purity of expression that makes it such a wonderful aperitif or match with today’s fresh food cuisines.

For the future, Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris will be two varieties that we believe will also be appreciated the world over for their match with food. Both these varieties in Ara and New Zealand conditions express the lifted aromatics and food friendly flavours that the modern wine consumer wishes to see.

You use very young wines, what do you think is the impact of that in your wines?
We are already seeing in our vines that with maturity comes more concentration and complexity. As the roots of the vines work deeper into the soil, they gain important minerals and nutrient that leads to increased flavour in the grapes. Our oldest vines are now mature in their setting, with access deep into the ancient gravels of our estate. We expect as they age further the wines will only continue to improve.

And what do you think will change as the vines get older?
It will be interesting to see how the old vines treat Sauvignon Blanc, as currently the more youthful plantings we have do give rise to the freshness and aromatic lift expected from Marlborough wine from this varietal. Older vines may give us different characters, but not necessarily better. Time will tell.

For Pinot Noir we would expect to gain steadily more weight and complexity at lower alcohols. Here at Ara, our more traditional high density plantings already allow us to harvest ripe fruit at lower potential alcohol already.

How important is the terroir for your Pinot Noir?
Our terroir is very distinctive in the crafting Ara Pinot Noir, with our very cool site, our deep ancient soils developed from ancient glacier action on the mountains that surround us, and our specialized viticulture practises. In our upper tier wines we show more of that terroir in its complexity of flavours from a multitude of small parcels from throughout our vineyard.

If you have to choose, which Pinot Noir wine is your favourite? (pick one NZ and one other)
There many New Zealand Pinot noir’s I have appreciated over the years, with Ata Rangi from Martinborough; Brancott Terraces from Marlborough; Pegasus Bay from Waipara and Felton Road and Gibbston Valley from Central Otago. However, for quality and affordability the Pinot noirs from Mount Difficulty have been hard to pass over many vintages.

One for Ara would be our 2012 Ara Select Block Pinot Noir now selling with the Monopoly. A top award winning wine from a great vintage

For France, it is a bit like asking how long a piece of string is and yet I have admired the wines of Domaine Armand Rousseau for many years, particularly the Clos de la Roche.

What do you think of the future for NZ Pinot Noir?
At Ara we are very confident that Pinot Noir from New Zealand will continue to grow into the future. As more consumers the world over come to recognise that Pinot Noir is perhaps the most versatile and complimentary wine to serve with all cuisines, then we are in a rather unique position to satisfy the coming demand. As the only cool climate New World producer we can produce outstanding Pinot noir wines which demonstrate the lifted bright fruit aromatics and soft yet complex flavours that this variety can produce if handled well.


Ara wines Pinot Noir
A tagine, derived from North Africa and Morocco, is best described as a casserole. The word also describes the uniquely-shaped vessel that the dish is cooked in. It’s comfort food at its most comfortable. Set the table with brightly coloured tea lights and enjoy the company of friends with this one-dish wonder. Jo Seagar, a much- loved doyenne of the New Zealand food scene, has graciously allowed us to reproduce her recipe here.

Lamb Tangine1 kg lean lamb, cut into bit sized cubes
3 Tbsp oil
1 large onion, roughly chopped
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp fresh tarragon
2 tsp ground cumin
1 1⁄2 cups water or chicken stock
1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1 tsp grated orange rind
15 pitted prunes
2 tbsp honey
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1⁄4 cup almonds
1⁄4 cup sesame seeds
1⁄4 cup raisins

Heat oil in a large frypan. Add lamb, onion, garlic and stir over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Add the spices, herbs, water, orange juice and grated orange rind. Stir well and pour into a large covered casserole dish. If you have a tagine – all the better. Bake for 1 1⁄2 hours at 160 degrees. Stir every now and then and add more water if the mixture becomes too thick or dry. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the honey, prunes and cook for a further 10 minutes or until the prunes are soft. In a small frypan, with a touch of oil – gently toast the almonds and sesame seeds until golden brown. Be careful that they do not burn. Finally add the raisins for the last 30 seconds. Sprinkle over the meat mixture and serve with either rice or couscous.

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