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Meaning “dawn sky” or new beginning in New Zealand’s native Maori language, Ata Rangi is today one of the country’s top producers of Pinot Noir thanks to the vision of Clive Paton. Paton started out as a dairy farmer, but in 1980 he had a dramatic career change and began to explore Marlborough’s viticultural potential. Despite a lack of winemaking experience, Paton had read a scientific study comparing Marlborough’s terroir to that found in Burgundy and he set out to learn how to make top quality wines here.
Over the intervening years Paton has honed his winemaking skills to produce sensational Pinot Noir with a worldwide cult following. His Crimson Pinot Noir takes its name from Project Crimson, a charity supporting the saving of two endangered native trees, which is supported by Ata Rangi. The grapes are harvested from the estate’s younger vines which creates a fresh, fruit-forward profile with plenty of bright red cherry fruit.
To showcase the natural character of the Pinot the must is vinified in stainless steel tanks and then matured in oak barrels for 9 months. This adds subtle hints of sweet spice on the palate, gentle tannins, and a silky smooth texture.