Borthwick_03pinotnoirWhen The CorkDork suggested Kiwi Reds for this, the 17th edition of Wine Blogging Wednesday, I thought it was a great idea. Personally, I had only tried one New Zealand red, a pinot noir from Spy Valley. I enjoyed it, so I was happy for the excuse to explore more.

Well, it was much more difficult to find a wine to post about than I thought. Isn’t NZ supposed to be a fairly "hot" region for wines beyond sauvignon blanc? After visiting a few mediocre shops that didn’t have any wines that fit the bill, I headed to one that I thought would give me several options.

How many did it offer? Three…one being a newer vintage of the Spy Valley (which Derrick didn’t care for too much).

So, after some consideration, I selected this bottle of Borthwick Vineyard 2003 Pinot Noir.

You can visit the Borthwick Vineyard website for background information (they have a nice "story"), but we’ll get right to the tasting notes here.

Medium, slightly opaque crimson

The nose is faint, even with some time in the glass and vigorous swirling, but some cherry aromas are present

Medium-to-light body, low tannins (despite what their website says) and lower-than-anticipated acidity. The flavors are primarily cherry with some cola-like notes as well.

Lenn’s Grade: C+

Comments: While not offensive, this wine was underwhelming At this price point, I expect to get a little more — even from the sometimes-pricey pinot noir. It’s an 03 bottling, so maybe it’s just still tightly wound and young, but I don’t taste enough acid or tannin here to offer any hope for long-term aging. At this point, I’d consider this a gulping pinot noir and that’s certainly not what anyone wants for $25, right?

Let’s thank The CorkDork for turning our sights to New Zealand…