2011 Mount Edward Estate "Muirkirk Vineyard" Pinot Noir Bannockburn Central Otago

SKU #1297216 95 points Raymond Chan

 Full, even, ruby-red colour with garnet hues, lighter on the rim with a brick tint. This has a firm and intensely concentrated bouquet of savoury dark-red cherry and berry fruit packed with a complex amalgam of dried herbs, whole cluster stalk notes and nutty oak. This has richness, density and secondary complexity on the nose. Medium-full bodied, the palate is fresh and lively with plenty of power and underlying drive. The vibrantly rich dark-red berry and cherry fruit is intermixed with complexing dark herbs and whole bunch stalk detail, and nutty oak elements. The fruit is framed within a structure composed of fine-grained, powdery tannin extraction, and enlivened by mouthwatering acidity. This has plenty of body and presence, and carries to a long, rich, sweet-fruited and well-textured finish. This is a rich, vibrant, well-structured Pinot Noir with succulent dark fruits and complex herb, stalk and nutty notes, the wine showing some secondary flavour development. Match with lamb, beef, venison and semi-hard cheeses over the next 7-9+ years. Clones 5, 6, Abel and MS, from the ‘Muirkirk’ vineyard, Bannockburn, vines planted from 1996, indigenous yeast fermented with 50% whole bunches to 13.5% alc., the wine aged 16 months in seasoned French oak.  (4/2017)

92 points Bob Campbell

 Pinot that’s been made with a light touch to produce a wine of purity and power. Dark cherry, spice, fresh herbs and a gamy, barnyard-like character perhaps from bottle development. Silken-textured wine offering an array of interesting flavours.  (3/2017)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Pale to medium ruby with a hint of purple, the 2011 Muirkirk Pinot Noir has an earthy / herbal laced nose over a core of cranberry, Bing cherries and wild strawberries. Medium bodied with a fresh, red berry character with plenty of earthiness, it gives a long herb laced finish. (LPB)  (12/2014)


 Medium red. Captivating aromas of red fruits, spices, smoke and earth are lifted by ineffable high notes of orange zest and rose petal; reminded me of a Chambolle. Then sweet, round and pliant in the mouth, but with no lack of grip to its red fruit, spice and earth flavors. Deeper, richer and a bit oakier than the regular Central Otago bottling, and firmer--even a bit youthfully bitter-edged--on the shapely finish. In a distinctly Burgundian style, this wine may merit an outstanding rating with a couple more years in the bottle. (ST)  (9/2014)

K&L Notes

Winemaker's Notes: "Muirkirk Pinot Noir gives you a very textural wine, plenty of breadth and depth, with slightly darker flavours associated with bannockburn yet with elegance and lightness that our Mount Edward house style brings. An elegant wine, 2011 brings a lighter more delicate style than warmer years. Defintly a wine for people who enjoyed grace over concentration We have held this wine back for later release, by doing so the wine has gone from pure fruit with light tannins to a savoury and more herb driven wine, lots of funk developing. A super interesting and more old world than new world style pinot. No filtration or fining, deposits may form. Muirkirk vineyard is situated on Felton Road in Bannockburn on a gentle north west sloping corner. This wine is about single site expression, a small limited parcel that shows the true characters of our vineyard within one of Central Otago’s greatest sub regions."

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Staff Image By: Alex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/21/2017 | Send Email
This Pinot is loaded with flavors, depth, personality and place. The vineyard of origin is at a very high mountainous elevation in Central Otago, which is quite cold, but still receives unimpeded sunshine through the thin atmosphere. What results is phenolic magic. It has beautiful, rich fruit flavors of blueberries, cola berries, blackberries and cherries with hints of fresh thyme, dried coriander and wild game — and cool-climate acidity that provides the wine a fresh vigor. This is an absolute steal for a single-vineyard Pinot of this caliber and age.​

Staff Image By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/19/2017 | Send Email
Today we had the pleasure of tasting with winemaker/proprietor Duncan Forsyth, and this was one of the real surprises of the line-up: a recently re-released bottling of single vineyard Pinot Noir. Savory, with aromas of dark fruit and an appealing, gamey quality, the wine also has quite a bit of concentration, structure and savor on the palate, all in terrific balance.

Staff Image By: Steve Bearden | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/11/2017 | Send Email
Here is a fantastic Pinot just beginning to show secondary nuances due to several years of bottle age. This starts out with leesy aromas of wild raspberries, dried herbs and bright flavors of red berries. The savory finish has mature flavors of muted red fruits, persistent length and shows wonderful development.

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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.