2012 Quartz Reef Pinot Noir Central Otago (Biodynamic) (Elsewhere $40)

SKU #1165739 94 points James Suckling

 A ripe dark and plush pinot noir that is typical of this Bendigo vineyard, plush ripe raspberry compote and darker black fruits, cedary oak is layered in deftly, some gentle spice too. The palate has an engaging mix of concentrated rich fruit and elegant fine tannins that wrap smoothly around the fleshy core, great balance and length - superb wine, finishes fresh.  (4/2014)

93 points Bob Campbell

 Made from biodynamic grapes grown in the Bendigo district. Dense, ripe sweet fruit flavors with red and black cherry, plum, spice and a suggestion of floral characters. Impressively powerful, focused wine with good development potential. Tasted nine months later the wine has developed an appealing perfumed aroma of violets and wild thyme. Charming, silken wine with a great texture.

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 92+ points: Pale to medium ruby-purple in color, the 2012 Pinot Noir has an enticing nose of crushed cranberries, pomegranate and red cherries with hints of loam, iron ore and wild thyme. Medium to full-bodied and put together with a great structure of medium to firm finely grained tannins and enlivening acid, it has plus plenty of fruit to flesh it out the frame and finishes long with earthy, mineral suggestions. Drink it now to 2018+. (LPB)  (10/2013)

K&L Notes

A simply stunning new release from one of New Zealand's most accomplished winemakers in what is quickly becoming the most highly celebrated vintage of all time in Central Otago. Austrian born Rudi Bauer has been making wines for three decades in New Zealand and has a hard-earned reputation as one of the most quality-orientated winemakers in the business. His estate sits in the Bendigo sub-region of Central Otago. The vines, which are lovingly hand-tended and certified organic / biodynamic, have roots in complex soils of fine clays, gravel moraines and quartz crystal. This unique site produces Pinot Noir with profound focus, power, linear drive and multiple layers of textural complexity. There is a real purity to Rudi's wines that comes from immaculate fruit and very non-interventionist winemaking. The 2012 is one of the finest I have tasted from this estate. It has a beautiful youthful exuberance and expressive flavors but without doubt will also be a wine for the ages; I believe this wine will age spectacularly for 10+ years. (Ryan Woodhouse - K&L NZ Wine Buyer) Raymond Chan: 92+ "Moderately full, dark ruby-red colour with purple hues. The nose is fresh with concentrated aromas of vibrant, dark red cherry and berry fruits, revealing nuances of pepper, fresh herbs…and minerals. Medium-full bodied, tightly concentrated flavors of dark red cherry fruit, spices and liquorice form a firm core with linearity and drive."

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Staff Image By: Jim Chanteloup | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/11/2014 | Send Email
Austrian-born winemaker Rudi Bauer is something of a pioneer in Central Otago, with almost 30 years under his belt making wonderful Pinot Noir and superb sparkling wine in this region. I have to say, the 2012 is one of his best in recent memory and a deal at $30. The bouquet is bright and lifted, offering notes of raspberry, cranberry,cherry, Asian spice, earth, dried tangerine peel and a hint of toffee. On the palate there is terrific balance and focus with a beautiful dance between power and elegance supported by lively acidity. The finish is long, complex and layered that fans out like a peacock's tail.

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Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.

New Zealand

- New Zealand is an extremely diverse wine-growing nation. The long history of producing wine started in the 1830s with wineries such as Mission Estate (1850) and Te Mata Estate (1896) still producing wine today. The two islands hold a multitude of different growing climates ranging from warmer areas such as Hawke’s Bay to very cool regions such as Waitaki, and Awatere. Most regions are defined as Maritime with the exception being Central Otago that has a moderate Continental climate with the high elevation creating dramatic diurnal swings in temperature. The plethora of grapes grown in New Zealand reflects this diverse microclimate make up. Everything has a place here, Bordeaux varietals and Syrah in Hawke’s Bay, Chardonnay and Pinot in Nelson, Pinot Noir and Riesling in Central Otago , aromatic whites in Waipara and pretty much everything you can imagine in Marlborough. New Zealand is also one of the “greenest” wine producing nations on earth (94% of wine certified sustainable in 2013) with a strong focus on organic and Biodynamic farming.
Alcohol Content (%): 14