2012 Felton Road "Bannockburn" Pinot Noir Central Otago (Biodynamic) (Elsewhere $50+)
Clear color; super-fragrant cherry, plum and spice aromas all seek to dominate the bouquet, but none succeed, with a hint of oak in the background. The palate has exceptional texture and length, 30% whole bunch, 30% new oak.
This super-classy "entry level" wine outguns many flagship labels from other producers although, to be fair, so does the price. Berry/cherry and floral flavours against a background of savoury/earthy/spicy characters giving extra complexity. Firmly structured Pinot Noir that, though still quite approachable, shows good cellaring potential.
A plush Pinot Noir from the 2012 vintage, this has plenty of satsuma plum and dark cherry fruits as well as bright redder cherries, dark spices and freshly toasted oak. The palate has supple and fleshy fruit flavours, cherries and summer berries, fine tannins fan out superbly, a touch of liquorice to close - full of pleasure.
This red exhibits a pure, succulent core of juicy ripe raspberry notes, with flashes of wild strawberry and cherry. The details of violet, sandalwood and baking spices are charming, coming together in a chorus on the long finish. Drink now through 2028.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Good bright medium red. Dark raspberry, smoked meat, gunflint and a hint of pepper on the soil-driven nose. Intensely flavored, savory and dry, with excellent cut to the red berry and spice flavors. This has the generosity of fruit to support its serious spine of dusty tannins.
Bright ruby (not much blue despite the wines' youth). Intensely ripe on the nose but no sweetness on the palate. Quite a change of style! Quite grown up. Lots of excitement and reverberation on the palate. Dry finish and real savour. Very long and punchy.
The "Bannockburn" bottling is selected from Felton Road's three estate vineyards in Central Otago, The Elms, Calvert and Cornish Point vineyards. All fruit is farmed organically and Biodynamically. Felton's winery is fully gravity fed. The fruit is gently de-stemmed with 20% left whole cluster. Only native yeasts are used for fermentation. The wine enjoys 11 months in top quality French oak cooperage and is bottle without fining or filtration to preserve the complexity and nuances of the wine. Winemaker's notes: "Violets and roses, with a potpourri of spice box elements. A very textural rich palate of vibrant fruit without a hint of heaviness or excess. Intense concentration is coupled with a purity that enables every subtlety to sing through. This being a combination of the three estate vineyards, the subtleties are manifold, each contributing to the complexity rather than being lost in the blend. The structure is confidently firm but not aggressive."