Tuesday, 8 April 2014

A Pinot From Across the Main Divide

I thought it was about time got back on with my blog, I've only written a hand full of pieces over the last 18 months, despite tasting numerous wines, and what better way to start off again than with a Pinot Noir from New Zealand.

Main Divide, apart from being the other name of the Southern Alps on New Zealand's southern island, it is also the name of the winery from the Donaldson family, the other being Pegasus Bay, who make some stunning wines, but that's for a later post I feel.

In it's beginning, fruit was bought in from local growers as required, then in 1997 the decision was made to change Main Divide into a "quality focused brand". In order to achieve this they began working much closer with growers who they felt would produced top quality fruit, and from sites that expressed regional and varietal characteristics. By working closely with the growers they are able to promote their beliefs in sustainable viticultural management, organic techniques, low crop levels and minimal handling of fruit.

Within the winery they employ gentle pressing the use of wild fermentation, malo-lactic fermentation and to clarify by settling. By employing all of these techniques through the whole process this allows enables them to produce some absolutely stunning wines with great fruit flavours and a depth not found everywhere.

The 2010 Main Divide Pinot Noir has an opaque ruby colour in the glass, not something you tend to see with Pinot Noir very often, this comes from the use of oak barriques from selected artisan Burgundian coopers, where it is matured for 14 months. You get aromas raspberries, blackberries and black cherries, with hints of sweet spice and smoke coming through. On the palate you get the flavours of all the fruit, the sweet spice seperates itself out into cinnamon and liquorice with hints of smoke intermingled in between all the fruit and spice. The tannins ripe and juicy, balanced out with just enough acidity to make your mouth water and help all the flavours linger for ages.

I have to say this for me is an absolutely stunning Pinot Noir and one of my favourites, it's not your typical fruit bomb style you get from many New Zealand producers, it has much more complexity and depth which they get from the use of burgundy coopers. You can find this wine online and from most good independent wine merchants

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