Pinot noir can be indulgent, spicy or just plain simple – just like my choice of frock of a weekend actually…
Urbn Vino Reserve ‘The Writers Block’ Central Otago Pinot Noir 2016 $50
Brendan Seal first heard of urban wineries whilst working as a winemaker in the USA and he immediately thought Dunedin would be a cracker of a location to do it himself. Making wine in the central city might seem like a logistical nightmare to some, yet for Brendan it’s a dream come true.
Sourced from a single vineyard and only made when the fruit is perfect, this is his flagship wine, crowdfunded and designed for the longhaul. Think cherry cola and cocoa, supple yet solid tannins and an ultra-fresh finish.
Sip with: Lamb and silverbeet pie.
Misha’s Vineyard Cantata Central Otago Pinot Noir 2015 $30
A ‘cantata’ is a word for a vocal piece accompanied by an instrumental. A song basically. But this Olly Masters-made pinot noir from the vertigo-inducing slopes of Bendigo is definitely singing a more complex tune. Pale berry-coloured and scented with baked cherry and wild strawberries, it’s a fresh, frisky, spice-laced sip with grippy tannins and good persistence of flavour.
Sip with: wild mushroom risotto
Baby Doll Marlborough Pinot Noir 2017 $18.99
Named after a breed of miniature sheep designed to keep his vineyards nicely manicured in the manner of living lawnmowers, Peter Yealands’ winemaking team has crafted a simple pinot noir that’s spicy upfront, holds some pleasant-enough fruit and has a smooth, refreshing finish. Uncomplicated easiness.
Sip with: Red onion, pumpkin and feta tart.