Wellington, Monday February 1 2010
Three hundred of the world’s most influential wine critics arrive in Wellington today with one question on their mind – how good is our Pinot Noir? And over the next four days our top 107 Pinot Noir wineries will put palates to the test in what is New Zealand’s most important international wine showcase.
Pinot Noir 2010 is a triennial event that takes over two years and $1.5 million to organise. Its aim is to expose the ‘glitterati’ of the wine world to the best of our Pinot Noir within an event environment that combines fine wine with fine cuisine and kiwi entertainment.
“Pinot Noir 2010 is unique in that we try and create a true New Zealand experience to showcase our best wines within,” said Pinot Noir Chairman and Villa Maria Group Winemaker, Alastair Maling MW.
“This allows us to run formal and delegate tasting sessions focusing solely on Pinot Noir alongside a social and culinary programme that includes white wines of all varieties,” he said.
As always the Pinot Noir event focuses on topical and relevant issues and themes designed to stimulate debate as well as the palate. In 2010 these themes revolve around how well our Pinot Noir ages, our distinctive regional differences and how we apply – and the impact of – New Zealand’s sustainable viticulture practices.
“These themes are critical to us – particularly offshore,” said Alastair.
“We know we grow great Pinot Noir – but how well does it age? To test this we’ll hold a special formal tasting of selected 2003 Pinot Noirs and ask our international panel of experts and other delegates to give us their views.
“We will also do this from a regionality perspective to see if we can truly lay claim to distinctive regional differences. And, in a similar way we will see if sustainable growing practices produce wine with a noticeably different palate.”
Alastair says that, as in previous Pinot Noir conferences, he expects robust debate to flow as wines are compared and the tastings continue.
“Debate is essential and we have in New Zealand some of the best wine writers and commentators in the world so I suspect the discussion will continue long after they leave New Zealand.”
Pinot Noir New Zealand 2010. Wellington Waterfront February 1 – 4 2010. www.pinotnoir2010.co.nz