Price:  £32.50 | Case Rate: £30.99
Ex Tax: £27.08

Escarpment - Kiwa Pinot Noir 2017


  • Country: New Zealand
  • Wine Region: Martinborough
  • Wine Maker: Larry McKenna
  • Grape: Pinot Noir
  • Grape Percentage: 100%
  • Alcohol Percentage: 13%
  • Unit Quantity (ml): 750
  • Best To Drink: Drink Now - 2025
Duty/Vat Paid
Minimum Qty: (6 btls)
WA: 90+ (2016) JR: 17+ (2014) WS: 94 (2015) JS: 96 (2015) VS: 91+ (2014) WE: 92 (2014) WF: 94 (2015)

Wine tasting notes

The rich dark fruit, spicy oak and savoury background notes of this concentrated, firmly structured wine speak of classic Martinborough pinot.

Winery Information


Nestled amongst the undulating hills of Martinborough, in the gaze of the Aorangi Ranges, Larry McKenna, or Larry ‘McPinot’ as he is affectionately known, quietly crafts some of New Zealand’s most impressive wines. Pinot Noir is the grape he is most famous for, and his Insight Series of single vineyard expressions speak volumes for the unique Martinborough terroir. Not wishing to be in any way pigeonholed, he also produces world class Chardonnay and Pinot Gris!

Expert Reviews

Wine Advocate/Robert Parker (2016)90+ pts

Feb 2018 - Even more savory and earthy than the other Escarpment wines, the 2016 Kiwa Pinot Noir hints at mushrooms and leather, while the fruit remains in the background. It's medium-bodied but without the concentration and ripeness I expect to find in these wines. It's still an attractive wine with silky tannins and a lingering finish, just somewhat outside the norm at this address.. (2014)17+ pts

Here the fruit seems brighter, redder, more cranberry in its lifted aroma. Chewy and dry and so textural, with a savoury elegance like many layers of fine paper. So cool even in a warmer vintage. Succulent and long and chewy for now. Needs time. Lots of energy and life. (JH)

Wine Spectator (2015)94 pts

Dusty white pepper and rose petal notes are aromatic, leaping out of the glass to complement the dense core of mineral-laced dark fruit flavors, with plenty of anise and nutmeg details. The intensity gains momentum on the finish, which is expressive and generous.

James Suckling (2015)96 pts

The sweet and fragrant spices and perfumed pinot noir fruits, a hallmark of this vineyard, are alluring and the depth that follows makes for an engaging, convincing pinot noir. The palate has succulent, attractive bright red cherry fruit aromas and the palate has a very focused, powerful yet elegant feel, and a feathery and ethereal finish. Drink now. Screw cap.

Vinous/Stephen Tanzer (2014)91+ pts

Bright, dark red. Aromatic scents of anise, red licorice, black pepper and herbs on the nose; more salty than fruity. Suave and juicy in the mouth, with enough raspberry fruit to support the pepper and herb elements. This silky wine conveys a very sexy soil-driven character and complicating salinity. No easy sweetness here but the finish shows excellent length and lift. The tightest of these three single-vineyard Pinots, finishing with a firm tannic spine. This should evolve gracefully in bottle and may ultimately merit an even higher score. -- Stephen Tanzer

Wine Enthusiast (2014)92 pts

Of Larry McKenna's 2014 Pinots, this full-bodied offering is the most approachable right now. A rich, velvety texture underscores elegant notes of brown sugar, tea, cherries and cinnamon.

Wine Front (2015)94 pts

From 28 year old vines on the Cleland Vineyard, Cambridge Road, Martinborough. 50% whole bunch and 40% new oak. A pleasure to taste these four expressions of Martinborough Pinot side by side. Spicy, cherry and red berry, dusting of sweet cinnamon oak, a little herb and earthiness, but a brighter expression of Martinborough here. Medium bodied, firm almost sappy acidity, grainy lightly drying sandy tannin, plenty of crunch and energy, and a bright strawberried finish of good length, with a slight herbal bitterness. Excellent now, and better again with a couple more years in bottle.

Vinification Notes

The Escarpment “Insight Series” allows individual vineyard expression from exceptional sites within the Martinborough Geographic Indication. This wine was grown on the Cleland Vineyard Cambridge Street, Martinborough from 29 year old vines. A combination of deep alluvial gravels which the Martinborough Terraces are renowned for and a blend of Clones UCD 5, 6 and 13 always rewards us with savoury, complex, spicy wine. It was open topped fermented in traditional wooden cuvees, hand plunged every 12 hours, with a total vat time of 17 days. After pressing it was matured in 30% new French oak barriques for 12 months. It was fined using a minimum of egg whites to protect the flavours but aid brightness in the glass without filtering, promoting soft mouth feel and texture. This is an outstanding example of classic Pinot Noir. It will continue to develop for up to 10 years and will always be a wonderful counterpart to any game food.