2009 Rippon Mature Vine Pinot Noir, Rippon, Lake Wanaka, Central Otago, New Zealand (£31.95, reduced to £28.75 by the case, Lea & Sandeman tel. 020 7244 0522). I wrote up the 2003 Rippon Pinot in this column five years ago. It was the first vintage that winemaker/sage Nick Mills made on his return home from working in Burgundy for estates such as the great Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. This 2009 ‘mature vines’ Pinot is the finest expression of his precious vineyards that I have tasted. I am not going to bang on about Nick’s obsessive dedication to biodynamics. What I am happy to expound on is the impact that this holistic approach to viticulture has had on the flavour of the wine. This is a stripped down, pulsating engine of elemental Pinot, bristling with minerality, energy and life – it is the soil speaking through the vine. It is the first time that I have tasted a Kiwi Pinot and not been tempted to say that ‘it tastes a bit like….’, referring back to Burgundy and the acknowledged traits associated with their Domaines and vineyards. This wine is Rippon – it cannot be anything else. It is sublime, lithe and memorable. Fractals of flavour burst on the tongue and the spindrift of urgent tannins is a wonder to behold. This is great wine.