Ata Rangi’s McCrone Vineyard was planted in 2001 using a mix of clones that has become part of the Ata Rangi fabric: Abel or ‘Gumboot” clone, Dijon selections (115 and 777) and Clone 5. Although just around the corner from our home block, the soils are remarkably different.
Whilst the Martinborough Terrace is predominantly alluvial gravels, there is a compact seam of clay which threads its way across a section of the terrace, fanning out over the gravels and creating a cooling effect on the roots in the soil. The McCrone site catches this seam and delivers a distinctively different aroma and flavour profile than that of the Ata Rangi Pinot Noir, even with vine age taken into account.
The 2016 is supple and lithe with gorgeous primary fruit characteristics. The nose is beguiling, with exotic aromas of both florals and spice – rose, sage, black pudding, sandalwood and liquorice. There’s great weight on the palate and a concentration that builds as you spend more time with this wine. Harmonious and beautifully integrated, it’s delicious to drink now but will equally reward from cellaring.