2011 Estate Pinot Noir (RRP $45)

In the vineyard

2010/11 was  a challenging  season across most of the region. Although flowering and subsequent fruit set were good, the oustanding feature of late summer and early autumn were the frequent rain events  and subsequent fungal disease pressure. Fortunately, because we entirely hand pick our fruit we were able to select only those grapes in good condition. The picking date of March 29th was the earliest so far at Folding Hill.

Winemaking

Juice analysis - pH 3.25 TA 8.9 Brix 24.4 ABV 14%

Bunches fully destemmed but not crushed. 6-8 day cold soak then fermented with both wild and inoculated yeasts. Hand plunged 3 times per day and fermented to dryness over 6 – 9 days. Post ferment maceration until wines in balance then run into French oak barriques (Francois Frere medium toast, approx. 33% new), Barrel matured for 11 months and then selected barrels blended to produce a wine aiming for  complexity, texture, structure and length, in addition to the usual characteristic dark fruit flavours. We continue to use Diam closures for our wine as this replicates the characteristics of a traditional cork with no risk of cork taint.

Reviews

Gourmet Traveller Wine Top 100 New Release 95/100

Cameron Douglas MS "Quite a youthful bouquet with taut aromas of light red fruits - freeze-dried raspberry and sweet black cherry and plum, a hint of peppery fruit spice and soft dried herb  qualities; medium+ influence of oak; On the palate - dry with a youthfully taut palate showing off the vibrant fruit quality and cooler climate of Otago with medium+ acidity; the oak is noticable, but only because the wine is young and requires some integration time, medium fine tannins. Balanced with medium+ length and complexity." 5 Stars

Wine Advocate "Pale to medium ruby-purple colored and exuding a fragrant nose of Kirsch, warm cranberies and red roses with nuances of Szechuan 

pepper, cinnamon stick and cloves, plus a whiff of toast, the medium bodied 2011 Pinot Noir has a solid backbone of medium level, grainy tannins and 

exuberant acid suppoting the generous fruit on the palate. It finishes with good length. Drink now to 2017+ " 90 + pts

Bob Campbell MW "Tasted alongside the 2010 vintage this wine shows less obvious oak influence and a greater fruit emphasis, which I prefer. It is more accessible and more charming Pinot Noir with red cherry, raspberry, thyme and subtle vanilla flavours. Perhaps it lacks the power and potential of the 2010 but the wine is certainly more pleasing to drink at this early stage" 93/100 5 stars

Stephen Quinn "The 2011 was the lightest in colour and texture and closest to Burgundy in style, and the favourite of my colleague. It combined the same delicate acid and sour cherry tang of the 2010 with an ethereal lightness of touch. An elegant and perfumed wine that sang of beauty and place. At the end of the tasting, the 2011 had the least left in the bottle, which told me it was our favourite on the night."

Raymond Chan "Fullish, dark ruby-red colour with purple hues, youthful in appearance. The nose is firm with moderately concentrated and packed aromas of dark cherry and berry fruit with a subtle herbal and undergrowth elements, complexed by savoury earth, liquorice and spice detail. Full-bodied, well-concentrated flavours of dark cherry and raspberry fruit intermingle with spicy plum and liquorice notes. This has a dense core, with the substantial structure and extract. Fine, grainy tannins feature, coating the palate, enlivened by good acidity. This is fulsome and robust, and there is drive, carrying the flavours and textures to a long, lingering finish with spice and plum nuances. This is a full and robustly structured Pinot Noir with dark cherry, liquorice and earthy flavours. Match with hearty Mediterranean fare over the next 6-8 years. Clones 5, 6 and Abel, hand-picked and fully destemmed, but not crushed, given a cold soak and partially indigenous yeast fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 10 months in approx. one-third new French oak barriques. "18.0+/20

Winestate "Subtle cherry, pip and berry aromas with a funky background. Grippy mid-weight palate-a touch hot with big bold tannins. Ageing well"4 1/2 stars

Sam Kim "It's sweetly fragrant on the nose displaying dark cherry, plum, spice and a hint of nutty characters. The palate is beautifully ripe and rounded with silky texture and excellent focus, backed by plenty of polished tannins. From their estate vineyard in the Bendigo district, this is a lovely complex pinot showing elegance and refinement. At its best: now to 2018." 91/100

Michael Cooper "Deep ruby, it is youthful rich and supple, with fresh, strong cherry/plum flavours, finely integrated oak and good complexity and harmony. Best drinking 2015 +" 4 stars

Charmian Smith Otago Daily Times "A mouth-filling wine with complex aromas, ripe fruit, a hint of spice, densely flavoured but bright, with a textural finish. Despite being two years old it's youthful with a fresh, lively edge." 4 stars

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© Folding Hill Wine Company 2014