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My tasting amigos, Collins and McLaren, joined me once again to taste this collection.
I enjoy their insights, and the discussions that the wines evoke, which makes an important task a rather more fun and interesting one.
Many days we are pretty much on the same page as to our individual judgements on the wines; at other times our views can differ, with this grouping perhaps leading to the greatest diversity of opinion, which was quite fascinating. Beauty in the eye of the beholder, perhaps?
2015 Lone Goat Block 9 Winemaker Series
Canterbury pinot noir
Attractive nose mixing savoury, smoke salami and wild herb notes as it becomes ever more fragrant.
A rush of sweet fruit is tempered by a fresh, tangy note: a "meaty" nuance is joined by brambly, wild herb notes while tilled earth appears with aeration.
Rich and mouth-filling, excellent balance and poise with complexity that makes this rather moreish.
2015 Pegasus Bay Prima Donna pinot noir
Richly fragrant nose of plum and dark cherry with some smoky char.
Powerfully fruited and massively concentrated with beguiling herb nuances, a little toastiness and a bright tangy element that softens with time.
This is pinot on steroids, a real statement wine; if you harbour thoughts that pinot is light-weight, you need to try this.
2016 Churton Marlborough pinot noir
Rating: Excellent to
A rush of forest floor and fungi quickly gives way to savoury notes and earthiness with a sweet fruit core. Elegance, perfumed flowers, silky textural palate highlighting cherry fruit with a chewy, almost chalky backbone, giving structure.
Real lift and lightness, a wonderful "peacock’s tail" on the finish, flavours expand and hang in the mouth. Delightful.
2017 Tohu Awatere Valley Marlborough pinot noir
Rating: Very good
Fragrant nose with darker, plummy fruit, pencil lead, herbs and some sweet oak nuances.
Firm and chewy in the mouth, there is an "upright" quality, almost a rigidity to it: it feels like it needs to exhale and relax.
Aeration starts this process as the wine fleshes out highlighting a little woody sappiness. Great with food now, or slosh it into a decanter.
2017 Mahi Marlborough pinot noir
Rating: Very good
Mixed berries, a sweet fragrance reminiscent of fruit jubes, dried herbs, moving to darker fruits and earth; later a sweet/savoury balsamic note.
A tingly element on the palate, red fruits, powerful herbal notes, a sweet fruit core building matched by freshness.
With time the youthful brashness and gangliness is more evident. Potential here with time.
2016 Aronui Single Vineyard Nelson pinot noir
Rating: Very good to
A curious, glue-like note quickly moves into dried fruits, strawberry and spice.
A little prickle on the palate leads to the sweetly fruited core, savoury notes with a hint of leather on the long, appealing finish.
Pale, yet deceptively powerful, with interest and intrigue. A mix of youth and aged notes, though I suspect best to drink right now.