Featured Reviews

Mud House 2018 Central Otago, 2017 ‘The Narrows’ and 2016 ‘Claim 431’ Pinot Noirs

19 December,2018

In October this year, I reviewed three Pinot Gris wines from Mud House. The wines demonstrated the different regions from where they came from, their aspirational level, and the truism that the more specific one can determine the origin, the more individual the wine (click here to see my reviews of the Pinot Gris). This time, it’s all about Pinot Noir. Mud House has high quality Pinot Noir producing vineyards in Marlborough and Central Otago, the latter region with the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard, sited in Bendigo, and already producing award-winning wines. Here, I review the 2018 Central Otago. 2017 ‘Sub Region Series’ ‘The Narrows’ Marlborough, and 2016 ‘Single Vineyard ‘Claim 431’ Pinot Noirs. www.mudhouse.co.nz


Mud House Central Otago Pinot Noir 2018

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Otago


Dark, deep, black-hued ruby-red colour, a little lighter on the rim, with slight purple hues. The nose is somewhat shy in expression, but shows good vinous presence and depth, revealing dark-red and black cherry and berry fruits with subtle notes of dark and fresh herbs, unfolding nuances of liquorice and spice, with violet floral suggestions. Medium-bodied, the palate is restrained in flavour, but the mouthfeel has good vinosity and weight. The flavours of dark-red and black cherries and berries form a fine core, and unfold to reveal subtle notes of dark herbs, spice nuances and violet florals. The fruit grows in sweetness and richness, as the wine flows along a light, supple line with lacy acidity providing liveliness and vitality. The wine carries with good linearity to a lingering finish of berry fruits, spices and herbs. This is a restrained Pinot Noir that blossoms in richness to show dark-red and black fruits with nuances of herbs, spices and liquorice on a supple palate. Match with antipasto and tapas over the next 3 years. Fruit from the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard, Bendigo, destemmed and fermented with a portion of whole berries, partially by indigenous yeasts to 13.0% alc., the wine aged in new and seasoned French oak barriques and in tank. 17.0/20 Dec 2018 RRP $24.99

Mud House ‘Sub Region Series’ ‘The Narrows’ Marlborough Pinot Noir 2017

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Marlborough


Even, dark ruby-red colour with light purple hues, paler edged. The nose is firm and taut with dark-red and black cherry fruit along with dark herbs, overlaid by minerally reduction. The fruit is subdued and the reductive elements up-front and dominating. Medium-bodied, the palate has a firm core of bitter dark-red cherry fruit melded with dark herbs and some oak toast. The sulphide reduction is prominent and lends a firmness and mineral edge to the palate. This has firm, fine-grained tannin grip with integrated acidity. The flavours carry along a a tight line leading to a finish of bitter cherry fruit and minerals. This is a firm Pinot Noir with bitter cherry and herb-nuanced fruit marked by sulphide reductive notes. Serve with grilled and barbecued red meats over the next 3+ years. Fruit from the narrowing of the Upper Wairau Valley, destemmed and indigenous yeast fermented to 13.0% alc., a portion of the wine aged several months in new French oak. 2,400 cases made. 16.0-/20 Dec 2018 RRP $19.99

Mud House ‘Single Vineyard’ ‘Claim 431’ Central Otago Pinot Noir 2016

Pinot Noir from New Zealand – Otago


Dark ruby-red colour with some depth, lighter on the edge with slight purple tints. This has an elegantly presented nose with fragrant aromas of dark-red and black cherry and berry fruit entwined with thyme herbs, notes of liquorice and spices and violet florals. The aromatics are harmoniously integrated with fragrant beauty and detail. Medium-bodied, the palate has sweet and luscious flavours of ripe dark-red and black berried fruits interwoven with plum elements, herbs and spices, some liquorice suggestions, unfolding violet florals. The fruit sweetness is supported by supple, fine-grained tannin extraction with soft acidity, lending softness to the mouthfeel. The wine carries to a sustained finish with lifted red floral notes. This is a softly sweet and luscious, harmonious Pinot Noir with cherry and berry fruit along with herb, spice, liquorice and floral notes on a very fine-textured, supple palate. This has beauty and detail. Serve with poultry and pork over the next 5+ years. Fruit from the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard, Bendigo, hand-picked and destemmed, and indigenous yeast fermented to 13.0% alc., the wine aged 12 months in 20% new French oak. 2,200 dozen made. 18.5/20 Dec 2018 RRP $32.99

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