Very pale in colour, this pinot noir from the Mornington Peninsula has aromatics of strawberries and red fruits. The palate is fresh with ripe red fruits and a restrained bearing. Ready to drink now, this is a youthful and approachable style of pinot noir. Rating: Good. Abv: NA. Price: $20s. Website: NA. Reviewed: December 2019.
The 2012 Burgundy vintage continues to provide very enjoyable wines that have sufficient fruit and charm to be approached now. From Domaine Faiveley, the 2012 Échezeaux grand cru has ethereal aromatics of cherry, blackcurrant and undergrowth befitting of this esteemed appellation. The palate is also delicious, with firm tannins and good length suggesting a long life ahead. I would cellar this wine for a further 5 to 8 years, but certainly I would not hesitate to drink now if you would prefer not to wait. Rating: Very Good to Outstanding. Abv: n/a. Price: high. Website: https://www.domaine-faiveley.com. Reviewed: December 2019.
Curly Flat’s “white pinot” is a very high quality, rosé style expression of pinot noir. A decidely pink hue in colour, evidencing time on skins, the wine has an attractive aroma of strawberries and white peaches. The palate is dry, medium bodied and has fresh racy acidity. Ready to drink now, this is an enjoyable wine that straddles the intersection between rosé and red wine and has more substance and interest than most rosés. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 12.7%. Price: $26. Website: https://www.curlyflat.com/. Source: Sample. Reviewed: December 2019.
Innocent Bystander are a very good producer in the Yarra Valley in Victoria. This wine is a dry pinot noir based rosé, and has a restrained aroma of strawberries and hay. The palate is dry, medium bodied and refreshing. Ready to drink now, this is rosé is perfectly pleasant. Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Price: $18. Website: https://www.innocentbystander.com.au. Reviewed: November 2019.
This 2012 wine from Sylvie Esmonin presented somewhat atypically for a Gevrey-Chambertin Clos Saint-Jacques, an appellation that I have taken a liking to, unfortunately. Its expression is very youthful and ripe, with overt cedar and sulphur characters. On the palate, it has intense fruit and good length. Overall, I think this wine will benefit from medium term cellaring for at least 5 to 8 years, rather than drinking now. Rating: Good. Abv: N/A. Price: N/A. Website: N/A. Reviewed: August 2019.
This is a refined Morey-Saint-Denis Clos de la Bussière from Domaine Roumier and the 2007 vintage. Its aromas remind of redcurrant, iron filings, blackcurrant and are pure in expression. The palate has great length and, in terms of structure, expresses gentle acidity, a graceful balance and modest fruit intensity befitting the lighter 2007 vintage, Overall, this is a very good Morey-Saint-Denis, but one that is ready to drink now. Rating: Very Good. Abv: N/A. Price: N/A. Website: http://www.roumier.com. Reviewed: August 2019.
This is another good 10X pinot noir release from Ten Minutes by Tractor on the Mornington Peninsula. This leading producer always offers a wealth of useful regional vintage information. Specifically, the 2018 vintage saw a late budburst (20 September – two weeks later than 2016), a warm spring, perfect conditions at flowering (24 November compared with 11 November in 2016 and 5 December in 2017) and consequent good yields coupled with an early harvest (17 March, compared with 1 April in 2016). Overall, it was 10X Tractor’s shortest ever hang time of 179 days from budburst to harvest.
In the glass, the 2018 10X pinot noir is a vivid red in colour, and has a smokey, minerally aroma. The palate is quite fruity, with good length, and displays a balanced expression of cherries and spice. It gained complexity with time in the glass – a good sign. Overall, this is a good release that can be approached now. Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Price: $34. Website: www.tenminutesbytractor.com.au. Source: Sample.
This wine from Domaine Ponsot is in a very difficult stage of its development. It presents in a raw fashion, with very fruit driven aromas of cherry and blackcurrant and resounding acidity and hardness on the palate. It is quite a difficult wine to appreciate at this point, and needs at least a further decade of cellaring to even show its potential. I don’t think decanting will be sufficient to present it for current drinking. Reflecting on this wine across its dimensions of esteemed producer, great vintage and wonderful vineyard, it is difficult to recommend this wine at this stage. Oh well, someone has to try these wines. Sealed using the unusual Ardea seal. Rating: Good (in the future), Acceptable now. Abv: not recorded. Price: $300+. Website: http://www.domaine-ponsot.com.
I don’t normally post on non-vintage Champagnes, but the quality of this Charles Heidsieck wine was quite compelling. Golden in colour, it has an overt and rather delicious aroma of biscuit and yeast. The palate is dry, fresh, has racy acidity, together with definitive lemon and cedar notes. This is a very attractive, special occasion style Champagne, that presents excellent value at around $95. Rating: Very Good. Abv: not recorded. Price: $95. Website: https://charlesheidsieck.com/en.
This is an excellent pinot noir from Curly Flat in the Macedon Ranges and the 2017 vintage. It has a subtle and attractive aroma of rhubarb. The palate is restrained with racy acidity, but also has a plump cherry like viscosity. Burgundian in style, this is an excellent Villages level type pinot noir, that is ready to drink now. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 13.3%. Price: $29. Website: https://www.curlyflat.com. Source: Sample.