Ata Rangi is owned and run by Clive Paton and his wife Phyll, together with Clive’s sister Alison and winemaker Helen Masters. Clive planted the bare, stony home paddock at the edge of Martinborough in 1980 and, in doing so, was one of a handful of people who pioneered grape growing in the area. Ata Rangi’s first vineyard covered less than five hectares of thin, well-drained alluvial soil. He was one of a handful of winemaking pioneers in Martinborough, then a forgotten rural settlement, who were attracted to the area by three key features – the localised, free-draining shingle terrace some 20 metres deep, the lowest rainfall records of anywhere in the North Island. His faith in the area paid off. Ata Rangi Pinot Noirs have three times won the coveted Bouchard-Finlayson Trophy for Best Pinot Noir at the International Wine and Spirit Competition in London. This international recognition came after a decade of gold medal and trophy successes in Australasian wine competitions. Today the wines enjoy an enviable international reputation, with listings in many of the finest restaurants of the world. As Bob Campbell MW notes “It’s true – Ata Rangi has the Midas touch with all of its wines.”
Another lovely offering shows that classic ‘gris’ pear and almond tart character, along with ripe nectarine, a hint of kaffir lime leaf and a touch of pithy grapefruit. The palate is rich and powerful, with a minerally texture and a long, intense finish.