Escarpment Vineyard was established in 1999 as a joint business venture between Robert & Mem Kirby (of Australia's Village Roadshow) and Larry & Sue McKenna. Collectively, these four directors bring to Escarpment a world of experience, skill and understanding to the nurturing and making of fine, deliciously sublime wine. It goes without saying the impetus behind establishing this vineyard came from the four's deep love for Pinot Noir. Meeting by chance in 1999 through Dr Richard Smith, Larry and Robert quickly hit it off and realised they had more than a love for the grape in common. Serious talk about establishing a definitive New World vineyard began in earnest even then and the 'idea whose time has come' has resulted in one of the most significant vineyard developments in the New Zealand district of Martinborough. Escarpment's deep commitment to Pinot Noir is supported by significant plantings of the latest clonal material available on modern rootstocks.
Situated just 5 kilometres east of Martinborough village, Escarpment's 24 hectares of distinctive alluvial gravel, terraced land stretches out along the banks of the Huangarua River.
Escarpment are unique. A New Zealand Winery run by an Australian growing grapes and producing wine with Burgundian methods! Larry McKenna (or Larry Pinot as he is known) has worked many vintages in Burgundy and understand Pinot like few others. High density planting and green harvesting all lead to incredibly intense and focused wines.
The Edge wines work incredibly well as entry level wines and show the same degree of quality that can be found higher up in this winery. The Kupe is an exceptional wine and one of the first single vineyard Pinot Noirs in New Zealand.