Full, black-hearted ruby-red colour with slight purple hues, a little lighter on the rim, youthful in appearance. The nose is full and voluminous with vibrant, aromatic dark-red and black fruits, lifted with a complex amalgam of black florals, savoury whole cluster stalk elements, anise and dark herb elements. This has excellent depth and concentration allied to perfumed lift and complexity. Medium-full bodied, the palate is succulently rich with ripe black cherry and black-berried fruits along with aromatic dark-red, violet and black florals, underlined by subtle whole cluster stalk and dark herb detail. The palate has freshness and vibrancy with lacy acidity along with fine-grained tannin extraction and structure. As the wine flows, the acidity lifts the fruit aromatics and enriches the sweetness. This has power, vitality and energy, and carries to a sustained, succulent, complex finish. This is a beautifully rich, vibrant and powerful, but impeccably balanced Pinot Noir with aromatic black fruits and subtle layers of complexity. Match with lamb, beef and venison dishes over the next 8-10 years. A blend of many clones from the Barton ‘Te Rehua’ vineyard, Huangarua Road, vines 23 y.o., indigenous yeast fermented with 65% whole bunches to 13.9% alc., the wine spending 24 days on skins and aged 18 months in 30% new French oak barriques.
Score: 19.5-/20Raymond Chan