Tool frontman visits New Zealand to talk wine

Tool lead singer Maynard James Keenan will attend Pinot Noir NZ 2017 to speak about wine. Photo / Getty
Tool lead singer Maynard James Keenan will attend Pinot Noir NZ 2017 to speak about wine. Photo / Getty

Next time Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan sets foot in New Zealand it will be to promote his other love - wine.

The singer who also heads Puscifer and A Perfect Circle, is a keen winemaker and will be speaking at Pinot Noir NZ 2017.

Keenan owns Caduceus Cellars and Merkin Vineyards in Northern Arizona, where he now lives.

The visit to New Zealand will be his first in a winemaking capacity.

"A major drawcard for visiting Pinot Noir NZ 2017 is hearing and learning about how New Zealand winemakers use Pinot Noir to express their own individual sites, styles and persona," Keenan said.

"I feel like there is a huge range of expression in New Zealand Pinot Noir, compared to Pinot Noir [from] other countries."

Grammy Award winning Keenan was intrigued to see how the relatively young Kiwi wine industry produces such a first-class, world-renowned product.

He is a vibrant addition to the lineup of keynote speakers including experts Jancis Robinson OBE MW and Ken Ohashi MW.

His presence aims to bring unique and fresh perspective to the celebration on Wellington's waterfront.

"Adding the artistic talents of MJK, who is initially from another expressive medium, to our event is a real point of difference and allows to really challenge our boundaries," Pinot Noir NZ chairman Ben Glover said.

"We're keen to explore how personal experiences add richness to the industry's evolution, which [his] story of music and wine emulates."

Pinot Noir NZ 2017 is the biggest festival of its kind, running for three days from January 31 next year.

The programme was designed to be an aspirational and thought-provoking exploration of New Zealand Pinot Noir.

Held every four years, it gathers 117 producers from the country's diverse Pinot Noir producing regions and showcases more than 300 wines.

• Limited registrations for Pinot Noir NZ 2017 open on March 1 2016. Bookings can be made at

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