Cambridge Road Winery is set in the well known Martinborough Terrace Appellation in the North Island of New Zealand. It's a small 5.5-acre estate that is focused on natural biodynamic winemaking. The vineyard was first planted with Pinot Noir and Syrah grapes in 1986 and was previously known as the Fraser Block. The current owners, the Redgwell family, Lance, Bridie and son Aston, purchased it in 2006 and converted to biodynamics. The production is managed entirely by the family, who are committed to minimal intervention in the winery allowing the expression of the Martinborough fruit to shine through.
Lance Redgwell spent years crossing the globe working in vineyards, sailing, and building ships, and eventually found his way back to New Zealand and settled in Martinborough to start making wines his own way.
Martinborough is one of the three sub-regions in Wairarapa (Maori for ‘glistening waters’). Acclaimed Pinot Noir, vivid Sauvignon Blanc, poised aromatics and elegant Syrah are all produced here. With a climate and soil profile similar to Burgundy, it’s no wonder Martinborough has excited the wine world. In fact, the region has just begun to settle in global wine terms, it's no longer a flurry of exciting vineyards going in with uncertainty. Though there is still plenty of room for exploration, today we can identify regional style and winemaking techniques, and clearly talk about what Martinborough wine is all about.
But Lance Redgwell didn't come to fit into this vision of Martinborough. He's here to show us what else can be done on these terraces. Take, for example Naturalist, his Petillant Naturel, a blend of Pinot Noir and a splash of Syrah, a true Kiwi ode to the many brilliant natural sparkling wines coming out of France. Red summer berries with a savoury pie crust. Great on its own or paired with summer pasta dishes, seasonal salads and rhubarb crumble with lots of custard!
His Pinot Noir is fascinatingly simple (on the outside!) with a hand tied tag - the wolf and the moon - meet La Luna Pinot Noir. From relatively young vines - averaging 30 years it's biodynamically produced and crafted without any filtration. Indeed, wild Pinot without masking that true Pinot character we so obsess over. Brilliance in its dark purple with a flamboyant nose of violets, forest, crushed berries and damson. Straight-up fruit on the palate with some truffle and five spice.
Two New Zealand wines definitely worthy of your attention!