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Cabal Pinot Noir 2017

$45 per bottle

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The 2017 growing season was fraught with many challenges but having said that our 2017 Pinot has shown this variety’s resilience and fortitude for the region and highlights that it thrives and loves
cooler years. The 2017 was a vintage that kept us on our toes, but with lots of hard work in the vineyard, perfectly ripened grapes were harvested. And now the wine in the bottle speaks of the hallmarks of a classic cool climate season, in which Pinot excels.


This is the fifth year that we have made a single vineyard wine from Waipara; the grapes originating from Cabal Vineyard which is situated on the gentle North slopes of the Waipara Valley. The soil is a
combination of clay and fragmented limestone. Various clones have been planted; grouped in rows and situated on differing slopes and aspect, thus giving us the opportunity to harvest several different parcels. Fermenting the clones separately allows the winemaker to build a wealth of information about each clone and how best to process the fruit in vintages to come. Typically, in Burgundy vineyards are planted with a mixture of clones and harvested at the same time. The Burgundians, however, have had centuries to learn about individual clones within their vineyards. In NZ we have only had 10-20 years and still have much to learn.


Traditional winemaking techniques were used; minimal intervention, meaning the wines practically made themselves with a little guidance and care from the winemaker. Approximately 40% whole
bunches were put on the bottom of the fermenter and the rest of the fruit was destemmed thus giving a combination of whole berries and some slightly crushed berries. Whole bunches give structure, tannin, and flavour; whole berries give abundant generous fruit and perfume. This ratio has resulted in a wine with intense perfume, deep dark fruit, firm yet silky tannins and overall is full bodied, mouth filling and well structured. Matured in French barrels, 25% new. Each barrel was tasted and only the best barrels were selected for the resulting blend. The wines were moved for the first time after 16 months to tank to marry together before bottling. No fining or filtration was used.


Intense aromas abound; vibrant cherry fruit with an earthy, savoury undertone, reminiscent of being in an underground, chalk cave, and with salted cured meat notes. The delicious herbal complexity
being the result of a high percentage of whole bunches in the ferment. Generous fruit initially on the palate balances the salivating, chalky, mouth coating tannins. Good acid levels also enhance the
drinkability of this Pinot and its age-ability. A complex style of Pinot Noir showing the abundant fruit of NZ combined with the robust tannins more typical of a Pinot from Burgundy. The fruit weight and structure of this wine will allow bottle development and ageing for the next 8 to 10 years.

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