by | Apr 23, 2020 | Red, Wine Reviews | 0 comments

Cobblestone translates in native Maori “secret place” it should translate more into “deep pockets”. This label is born from three vineyards established in distinguished wine regions, are owned by Saul and Anita Levine: 1971 Arroyo Seco, Monterey County, long growing season, for premium Chardonnay and Pinot Noir; 1997 Atlas Peak, Napa Valley,  once known for ordinary Sangiovese, now Zinfandel is the star; 2008 Martinborough, New Zealand, compared to producing fleshy wines Burgundy style. 

Their wines are made from a  single vineyard with limited production and dispensation. Wines vinified from a single vineyard, are especially transparent and result in a singular style. Pinot Noirs wines from New Zealand are quick to be described by critics as “fleshy”. I think the term is snooty, I like to describe New Zealand Pinot Noir wines as “ Burly”; powerful, plump, and untamed.

Martinborough is a town in the South Wairarapa District, in the Wellington region of New Zealand. It is 40 miles east of Wellington. The topography, geology, and climate craft distinct wines. Sheltered from the sea winds and rain by mountains provides a rainshadow, by keeping the vineyards dry and saturated with sunlight. The grapes grow on volcanic and gravel soils developing complex acid and fruit flavors. I adore this region because it’s different from Central Otago to the extreme south of the country. Central Otago wines are driven by black cherry, cherry cola, softer tannins, sweet baking spices, and spicy kick. Martinborough, displays wines with a dusty, iron element, almost like a Sangiovese, with notes of spicy orange, and mushrooms, frits are driven more with cranberries and Pomegranate. I applaud the region’s narrow production of wines.

The color is a medium+ ruby a pink rim. On the nose cranberry sauce, blood orange, red cherries, beets, wild herbs, smokey cigar box, dusted bitter cocoa nibs. On the palate dry, medium acid, ripe tannins, medium+ alcohol, medium+ body, velvety texture, medium intensity with ripe tart red fruits, redd juicy plum, rhubarb, pomegranate seeds, sun-dried tomato, soy sauce, fennel, thyme, and mint. Forest floor and truffle. Long finish. This is an outstanding wine. It is filled with concentration, ripe juicy fruit, zesty acid, oranges hit the core, and tannins are sateen. Savory and cedar flavors add sophistication, it’s generous, attractive, and finishes with tart cherries bringing back full circle a bounty of fruit. Drink, hold, assess more bottles if you can allot more. Whatever you choose The Levine Family has it right, Martinborough is a secret place….SHhhhhhh! Please find this wine at Hi-Time Wine Cellars.


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