Larry McKenna – otherwise known as Larry McPinot – is the man behind Escarpment. His name goes hand-in-hand with the best quality Pinot Noir from New Zealand. Escarpment is registered as a Sustainable NZ producer and is currently following a five-year plan to become organically certified.
The vineyards are sited above a natural escarpment sitting above the Huarangarua River on ancient gravels. Overlooking them are the Aorangi Ranges where Maori legend has it that the Polynesian voyager Kupe abandoned 3 canoes. The upturned canoes are still clearly visible, silhouetted along the top of the ridge, and Kupe’s image takes pride of place on every Escarpment label.
After over 21 years’ winemaking experience in Martinborough, Larry is now recognised as defining the terroir of the region with his exciting range of single vineyard wines. In his understated way, Larry told us, ‘I was awarded the George Fistonich medal by the NZ International Wine Show. It’s one of those lifetime achievement things you get when you have been around too long.’