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Lismore Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir
Complex bouquet of crushed rose petals, wild jasmine and fresh French herbs followed by a palate full of cranberry, raspberry and a long savory finish.
The grapes were picked at optimal ripeness. 30% whole bunch fermented in large 5000 liter vats with gentle pump-overs twice a day. The process allowed for a long extraction period which lends to the fruit expression and structure of this wine. The free run wine was drained off and the fermented grapes were then pressed in a traditional wooden basket press. The wine was racked into 225, 300 and 500 liter barrels where malolactic fermentation took place and the wine was aged for 10 months. 35% new French oak was used.
"The 2018 Pinot Noir comes from Walker Bay and Kaaimansgat and includes 30% whole-bunch fruit, aged for 11 months in 25% new oak. The bouquet sports vivid red cherry and raspberry fruit that is exceptionally well defined and beautifully integrated with the oak. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannins, well-judged acidity and a slightly fleshy texture. There is just the right amount of salinity here, and the finish is kept on a tight leash, allowing the detail and precision to be fully expressed. A slight sour edge on the finish keeps you coming back for another sip. Excellent and reassuringly classy. - Neal Martin" - Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2019), 92 pts
"Walker Bay and Elandskloof are the twin sources of 30% whole bunch-fermented Pinot from Sam O'Keefe. Juicy, floral and charming, it's a graceful, fruit forward style with some clove and tobacco spice and refreshing acidity. The finish is a little firmer than I remember. 2020-24"- Tim Atkin (South Africa 2020 Special Report), 92 pts
Tucked into the foothills of a dramatic mountain range at the bottom of Africa is Lismore Estate Vineyards. Californian Samantha O'Keefe has found paradise and the perfect terroir. Her passion combined with vines planted at 300 meters, chilled by the winter snow and nourished by the African summer sun, produce classic cool climate wines which are rich, complex and lovingly hand crafted.
Lismore Estate Vineyards
The Overberg region is rapidly earning a reputation for premium cool climate grapes. Greyton has now been designated a ward within that district recognizing the unique terroir expression of the wine that is produced there. Lismore is the only registered wine estate in the Greyton ward. Lismore's vineyards are planted on slopes at the base of the Riviersonderend Mountain Range. The combination of elevation and climate make for an extended ripening period which is roughly 3-4 weeks later than the more traditional wine growing areas in the Western Cape. There are a total of 12.5 ha planted with Chardonnay, Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc, and Viognier.
Holocene Apocrypha Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
Apocrypha Pinot Noir tends to showcase the blue and black end of the fruit spectrum, along with a brambly, floral, dried sage and thyme profile, higher acid than the Memorialis and more power.
We tend to enjoy this wine with lamb merguez sausage and saffron rice.
"Coming from more volcanic, south-facing soils, the 2018 Pinot Noir Apocrypha was 15% destemmed and will see 16 months in 20% new barrels. It’s a slightly darker-hued and darker fruited effort offering lots of blue fruits, iron, violets, and mineral aromatics. While it was basically not destemmed, there are no obvious stems on either the nose or palate, and it’s beautifully balanced, has bright acidity, medium to full-bodied richness, and a great finish. It’s another rock star of a Pinot Noir from Todd Alexander."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2020), 94-96 pts
Holocene Memorialis Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
Holocene Pinot Noir Memorialis is a blend of 777, Pommard and 115 clones from MonksGate vineyard in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA, and it saw about 20% new French oak for 16 months prior to bottling. It is always the lighter and more feminine of the two Holocene wines, with red fruits, white flowers, dried herbs, mushroom and forest floor aromatics, bright acidity and a lithe texture, long finish.
"Coming from a warmer than average year for Oregon, the 2018 Pinot Noir Memorialis comes from a west-facing hillside of sedimentary soils located in the heart of the Willamette Valley (not far from Beaux Freres and Shea Vineyard). All Pinot Noir that was 20% destemmed and brought up in 20% French oak, it shows a textured, incredibly elegant profile that has a perfectly integrated style, lots of raspberry and strawberry fruits, and classic Pinot Noir notes of dried flowers and spice. It should be approachable right out of the gate, yet given its balance, it should also evolve for 10-15 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2020), 93-95 pts
Ferren Pinot Noir Silver Eagle Vineyard is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
Winemaker Matt Courtney learned what he knows of Pinot Noir on the Sonoma Coast during his eight-year apprenticeship with Helen Turley of Marcassin Vineyards. At Ferren he employs artisan methods crafting his wines in small lots from single-vineyard sources with native fermentation and without fining or filtration. | Falling Bright
Silver Eagle Vineyard rests atop Stoetz Ridge, the land mass that divides the remote Sonoma Coast from the Russian River Valley. This vineyard experiences both the cooling ocean breezes of the nearby Pacific, as well as the warmth of the interior valley. The wine made from this unique confluence of climates is extraordinary: the Pinot Noir a rare balance of explosive wild berry, mouthwatering acidity, and rich, polished tannins; the Chardonnay a fascinating juxtaposition of briny minerality and candied citrus. [ The late Ulises Valdez - brilliant vineyard manager and owner of this vineyard - built his family home on this spectacular site.] | Ferren
Ferren Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
100% native fermentation (primary and secondary), long cool fermentations often lasting up to a full year, minimal lees stirring, no additions of any kind (commercial yeast, water, acid, enzymes, etc., never any fining or filtration). Aged 18 months in 15% new French oak (Francois Freres, Vosges, Troncais Forrests)
Fullerton Three Otters Pinot Noir is made from 100% Pinot Noir - 7-40 years old
This Willamette Valley blend hails mainly from three different vineyards in the north, east, and south of the Willamette Valley, with a smaering from five of Fullerton's other sites. The soils of the vineyards represent the breadth and diversity of the Willamee Valley with both sedimentary- and volcanic-based soils.
Blueberry and ripe strawberry with a dash of baker’s spice, bramble, and herbs. The palate carries the fruit forward elegantly with balanced tannins following. Intriguing complexity and depth—an impressive wine for all.
This wine comes from 100% destemmed rotator barrels fermented at ambient temperature reaching a peak temperature of 73° F. The rotator barrel spun twice daily during fermentation yielding a gentle extraction. After fermentation, the wine went through a three-week extended maceration, allowing the tannins to polymerize, soffening the wine. Aged for 12 months in French oak barrels and three months in tank, the wine was then bottled after filtration.
This wine is handled very gently in the cellar allowing the nuances of the delicate fruit to be preserved and the wine to be very approachable in its youth. We have a preference for pump-overs versus punch-downs for its smoother extraction and softening effect on the tannin. To retain freshness and verve we age most of the wine in tank. However, we softened up and rounded out about 25% of the blend in barrel. The result is a fresh, fruit forward, yet earthy and intriguing, Pinot Noir.
Maison Roy Willamette Valley Pinot Noir is made from 100 percent Pinot Noir.
The Willamette Valley Pinot Noir combines fruit from Roy's Dundee and Yamhill-Carlton estates. Gentle and suave, this Pinot offers inviting red fruit, baking spice, and a touch of purple floral tone. On the palate, a soft tannic structure makes this wine friendly and accessible in its youth and will keep drinking very well for the next 5-7years.
Tasting Note: This very aromatic Syrah has hints of black pepper, dark berries and herbs and a bloody, earthy character on the nose. The palate is full-bodied with velvety but structured tannins and a balanced natural acidity. The finish is fresh, long and supple. Best served at 16 to 18 °C, this wine will greatly benefit from decanting when drunk within the first 3 to 5 years after bottling.
Andrea Mullineux told me that their debut 2012 Mullineux Iron Syrah has been the hardest cru to fine-tune over the years. Indeed, it has been trialed since 2005 but never bottled...until now. "We have been working hard to perfect the acidity here and it's been important to get life into the soil, getting the vineyard healthy, so that it can be picked with good acidity. Because it is dry farmed, in a space of three days, it can god from 22 to 26 Brix – so picking decision is critical," she said. It has a subtle marine influence coming through on the nose with macerated black cherries, boysenberry jam and touches of iodine. The palate is medium-bodied with fine, quite grainy tannins, very nicely poised with touches of fig and marmalade towards the slightly saline finish. This is a strong debut to form the trio of Syrah single "terroir" offerings.
"The 2013 Iron Syrah has a roundness and softness on the nose that almost belies its complexity - red berry fruit, red peppercorns, rooibos and undergrowth scents that are very well defined. The palate is medium-bodied with ripe tannin, wonderfully savory and quite gamey, and beautifully balanced with impressive volume and sustain on the finish that you would have difficult distinguishing from a top Côte-Rôtie. This is an excellent Syrah, my only reservation being that there is a touch of heat on the finish. - Neal Martin"
- The Wine Advocate (erobertparker.com, November 2015), 93 pts
"Similar to the Schist Syrah in its weight and meatiness, the Iron Syrah offers a more elegant, immediate appeal. Dark red plum, smoked meat, and savory herbs are seamlessly integrated on a lush, juicy and firmly structured palate, finishing very very long."
- iwinereview.com (January 2016), 95 pts
Chateau Franc Lartigue Saint-Emilion Grand Cru is made from Merlot 70%, Cabernet franc 15%, Cabernet sauvignon 15%
Eight hectare property in the town of Saint-Emilion. Elegant and structured wine, keep for 10 to 15 years depending on the vintage.
Vines with an average age of 35 years have produced a concentrated wine. It is rich and full, while also having restraint and elegance. That makes for a fine balancing act of generous tannins and opulent black fruits. Drink the wine from 2021
- Wine Enthusiast 92 Points