2014 Felton Road "Bannockburn" Pinot Noir Central Otago (Biodynamic)

SKU #1231149 95 points Bob Campbell

 Lush, mouth-filling Pinot Noir with plum, spice, thyme, anise, liquorice and a character I describe as 'chocolate cherry liqueur'. Seductively smooth texture with a lingering finish. Very attractive.  (8/2015)

94 points James Suckling

 If Central Otago was the Côte de Nuits, then Bannockburn would likely be Vosne-Romanée and I’m going to hang it right out and say that Felton Road would be the top gun, the DRC. A handy array of bright red berries, orange citrus rind, then toasty mocha oak spice, some darker red plum and mouth-wateringly sweet fruit aromas on offer. Very bright, just-ripe fruits, liquorice and cinnamon, this smells vibrant and full of life. The palate has a soft, supple and creamy core with a glossy, fluffy mid-palate; tannins fan out even and long, smooth, velvety and quite plush, gently musky. Good balance and approachability, concentrated and pure. Drink now.

93-94 points Raymond Chan

 Ruby-red colour with garnet hues. The nose is soft and full with savoury dark-red berry fruits, some dried thyme herb and gentle whole bunch stalk elements and nutty oak nuances. A touch of balsamic complexity shows. Full, deep and dense, this has weight and mouthfilling presence. Dark-red fruits prevail with herb and stalk interest. The mouthfeel is supple, but reveals a firm core with fresh, lacy acidity. This has a long finish with undergrowth nuances to the fruit. There is plenty of wine here. A blend of 10 clones and 20 parcels, 50% from ‘Cornish Point, 35% from ‘Elms’ and 15% 'Calvert', vines planted between 1992 and 2002. 11 months in barrel.

93 points Wine Spectator

 Bay leaf, juniper and forest floor notes add an intriguing, fresh green edge to the juicy cherry and cranberry flavors, lingering with a note of dried lavender. Drink now through 2026.

K&L Notes

92 points The Wine Front: "Has some meatiness and ashy oak sniffs over dark berry and dark cherry fruit characters. Whiff of green herbs, some briar, pepper - good, deep perfume. Slides across the palate with some concentrated sweet berry fruit feel, almost jammy, but pinched with ashen tannins and finishes with good build of crushed slate mineral feel and lemony acidity. Powerful pinot noir, but finds harmony in fresh acidity and lithe texture. Bold statement pinot noir."

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Price: $39.99
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By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/27/2016 | Send Email
A stalwart year after year. I look forward to tasting Blair, Mike and Gavin's wines each year in June as an indicator of how the season was in the Cromwell Basin. Classic Felton here again, lovely richness, power, texture, but with vibrant acidity and structure. The 2014s seem quite forward at this stage and are drinking beautifully as young wines.
Drink from 2016 to 2026

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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