Although Tasmanian pinot noir still has its doubters, its positive development can be measured as much by the quality of the state's cheaper wines as by its more expensive. For $20 on discount, Tamar Ridge's Kayena showed what good, cheap Tassie pinot can really achieve with a delicious 2007 release (93pts).
Clear bright-crimson, this musky, floral and sweetly fruited north Tasmanian pinot noir reveals a ripe varietal perfume of raspberries, cherries, purple plums and stalk with lesser nuances of white pepper and seasoned vanilla oak also evident. Bestowed with a brittle, acidic backbone which should settle down with short term cellaring (typical of the state), its uncomplicated palate presents a light-medium bodied balance of soft raspberry, cherry, earth and white pepper flavours with moderate length, lingering sour-edged aspects and a prickly finale.
ü Simultaneously varietal and quaffable (if that's even possible!), the 2008 Kayena represents another great entry point into Tasmanian pinot noir from the label. It's even forced me to think of it as a Tasmanian alternative to De Bortoli's 2008 Gulf Station. Drink 2011-2013.