Nga Waka, Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand, 2018

Quite deep in colour, the nose shows dark cherries, truffle notes and a savoury earthy character. The palate is supple and smooth with savoury fruit and full silky tannins.

Grape Variety 100% Pinot Noir

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Nga Waka, Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand, 2018

Tasting Note

Lovely deep crimson colour. Wonderfully complex, displaying red berries, cherries and spices, with underlying savoury, earthy tones. Generously soft and supple, this Pinot Noir has class and distinction.

Food Matching

This silky pinot noir pairs perfectly with wild mushrooms and truffle… mmm delicious!

Nga Waka vineyard was established in Martinborough in 1988. They are a family-owned winegrower producing small volumes of fine Martinborough wine from estate-grown grapes. The name is taken from Nga Waka A Kupe (The Canoes of Kupe). The three hills, which lie side by side like upturned canoes, form the backdrop for the town of Martinborough and its surrounds. Legend has it that the hills were formed by the three canoes of the famed Polynesian explorer Kupe, which were carried inland by a huge earthquake and came to rest in the valley behind Martinborough.

Producer Info

Nga Waka (named after 3 hills which overlook Martinborough) is a small family owned winery, founded in 1988 by former diplomat Gordon Parkinson and his son Roger, producing wine from just 10 hectares of vineyard. Roger now runs the estate with his wife Carol and is a Roseworthy oenology graduate and has winemaking experience in France, which shapes much of the style here. Martinborough was one of the earliest planted regions in New Zealand and produces some of her most elegant wines. Nga Waka is an accredited member of Sustainable Wine growing New Zealand.

Regional Info

Martinborough is a wine-producing area in the southern part of New Zealand’s North Island. The small town and surrounding district are home to around 1,500 residents and some of New Zealand’s most highly respected boutique wineries. Martinborough’s cool climate and excellent soils are perfect for the production of balanced, elegant wines made from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

Martinborough lies around 35 miles (55km) north-east of Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city, in a wide river valley between the Rimutaka mountain range and the eastern Wairarapa hills. The Ruamahanga River meanders through the region on its way to Palliser Bay, 20 miles (32km) to the south. The small viticultural sub-region of Te Muna is just east of Martinborough township itself, and Gladstone lies to the north-east.

Martinborough was established in the 1800s as a service post for the surrounding farmland, but wasn’t discovered as a prime site for viticulture until the 1970s. In 1978, a scientific report compared the climate of the region with that of Burgundy in France, and a few pioneering vignerons began to buy land around Martinborough. Nowadays, the bustling township has several dozen wineries in its vicinity.

The viticultural areas of the region lie on the Martinborough Terrace – a raised plateau of alluvial gravel that has been forced up over time by tectonic movement. The free-draining nature of this soil is excellent for viticulture because it limits the hydration of the vines, leading to stress. These stressed vines put their energy more into producing small, concentrated berries than leafy foliage, increasing the quality of the grapes and subsequently the wines.

Martinborough enjoys a relatively dry climate due to the rain shadow of the surrounding hills. The area is climatically quite similar to Marlborough, with a coastal influence. High sunshine hours, low rainfall and cool nights assist in ripening the grapes and adding character to the wines.

Despite the fact that Martinborough has only three percent of all of New Zealand’s vineyard land, it is still widely considered to be one of the country’s prime wine regions. Its claim to fame is the exceptional quality of its Pinot Noir wines, produced by some of the most highly regarded wineries in New Zealand. The style of this wine is regarded to be more complex than its counterparts from Central Otago.

Winemakers Note

De-stemmed. Fermented at up to 30C with total maceration of 20 days. Run off to French oak barrique (25% new) for malolactic fermentation and 11 months maturation. Bottled un-fined and un-filtered.


Bob Campbell MW “Very typical Martinborough pinot noir with black-fleshed plum, dark berry, a hint of spice, anise and a seasoning of subtle oak. Impressive purity and energy. An elegant wine that should develop well in bottle. Drink 2017 to 2023” – 95 points.

A rich and textured Pinot Noir from the North Islands premier Pinot Noir growing region. Dark berry and spice flavours underpinned by silky tannins and subtle, refined oak from barrel maturation. Silver award New Zealand international

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