Mt Difficulty Bannockburn, Long Gully,
Pinot Noir 2015
Long Gully Pinot Noir is hand crafted in very limited quantities and only released in outstanding vintages. Crisp, dark, stella cherry notes sit alongside an assemblage of earthy, savoury brown spices with a background mocha element. These same lifted dark cherry along with lighter red cherry notes dominate the entry onto the palate; there’s a classic Long Gully dense mid-palate with flow and texture. The wine finishes strongly with a lovely tension present right through the fine-grained tannins and spicy dark berry fruit.
Mt Difficulty Long Gully Pinot Noir will improve for 10 – 15 years given optimal cellaring conditions.
The vines got away to a reasonably slow start: the beginning of spring bloomed dry and cool with low soil moisture coming into the season, and November was characterised by much cooler than normal temperatures. December was warm and remarkably settled leading to a compact and successful flowering. The warm settled spell continued right through January. February arrived and, whilst warm, was unusually damp, with much higher than average rainfall. March dried vineyards back out and the season finished with a warm flourish in April. We again started harvesting with lower sugars than typical at nice ripe flavours. The harvest was very compact, with everything being harvested over a 21 day period.
The fruit for this wine was harvested from our Long Gully vineyard on the 10th of April. One third of the grapes were destemmed with 25% whole clusters retained, the balance was fully destemmed. The ferments typically underwent a period of 10 days pre-fermentation maceration at about 90C. Fermentation took a period of ~7 days with a maximum temperature of 300C; the wine sat on skins for a further 6 to 7 days until it tasted in harmony. The wine was punched down a maximum of once daily right through its maceration on skins. The wine was settled overnight after pressing, and racked to barrel for 16 months. The wine underwent natural malolactic fermentation in the spring and was racked out of barrel in late August. The wine was not filtered or fined before bottling in December 2014.
Alc. 14% T/A 4.5 gL-1 pH 4.6 Residual Sugar <1 gL-1
Accolades & Awards
5 Stars - Michael Cooper MS
New Zealand Listener - 11 June 2018
"This outstanding red was hand-picked from vines planted in 1992 and matured for 16 months in French oak barrels. Enticingly perfumed, it is ruby hued, savoury and supple, in a full-bodied style (14% alc/vol) with delicious plum, spice and nut flavours that build to a silky-textured, long, harmonious finish."
Bob Campbell, New Zealand Master of Wine
22 July 2018
"Made from grapes grown in this Bannockburn vineyard with mostly 23-year-old vines and a small proportion of 20-year-old vines. Light, delicate pinot noir with impressive purity. Red fruits, floral and subtle spice characters. A totally charming pinot noir with potential".
Cameron Douglas, Master Sommelier
7 August 2018
"Specific and focused bouquet with aromas of wild thyme and red berry fruits, a steely almost haunting minerality against a back-drop of soft and mild toasty oak, quite complex. Dry, youthful firm textures from the tannins and abundant acid line. Flavours of red berries continue with red apple, cranberry and wild red floral notes. Decent length and complexity - a wine that requires decanting and preferably cellar time first. Best from late 2019 through 2027".