2010 Pyramid Valley Vineyards "Earth Smoke" Pinot Noir North Canterbury New Zealand
A fabulous nose of dried strawberries, plums and hints of smoke and bacon. Full body, with beautiful tannins and acidity. Super intense and beautiful. Long and gorgeous. No new oak. Better in 2016.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A tank sample due to be bottled within 2 weeks of my tasting, the 2010 Earth Smoke Pinot Noir gives ripe black raspberry and pomegranate aromas at this stage with hints of violets and baking spices. Generously fruited, it gives a medium-high level of very fine tannins with medium-high acid and a long, pure finish. Mike and Claudia Weersing continue to work nature’s magic on their wines. The results are truly unique wines that can only come from these creative hands working out of this pretty patch just inland from the Waipara. Even more exciting is that the quality straight across the estate and growers labels just gets better and more consistent each year from this relatively new operation.
Americans Claudia and Mike Weersing’s estate vines are grown so close to the ground, they look almost like a bonsai vineyard. Made as naturally as possible, it’s yielded a smoky, savory style of Pinot Noir that shows some dark plum and black olive fruit and a lingering, slightly chocolaty finish. The silky tannins suggest immediate drinkability, although its inherent balance and concentration suggest it’ll make it to at least 2020.
Winery Notes: "1.4 tonnes per acre from our east-facing home block; ten year old vines. Deep, well structured, clay-limestone soils: 30% clay, 12-15% active lime. Also biodynamic from inception. Late April pick, hand destemmed, 25% foot crushed. Ambient soak of 5-7 days, warm vineyard yeast fermentation (33C), 27-28 day cuvaison. Natural, spring malolactic. Ten months on original lees, in French barriques, 15% new, then held a further six months in tank. Bottled unfined and unfiltered, in September 2011. Alcohol 13.2%. Production: 250 cases. Similar robe to the Angel Flower, perhaps a bit deeper. Very engaging and complex nose of soil, wild fruits, and spiced orange peel. Real power and lovely texture in the mouth, and again wilder and more earthy than the Angel Flower.