Mud House’s Gold-Medal 2012 Central Otago Pinot Noirs
The ‘Claim 431’ Bendigo vineyard of Mud House is proving to be the source of outstanding fruit for Pinot Noir. First planted in 2003, wines from the very first crop have been winning top awards both domestically and overseas. Originally known as the ‘Golden Terraces’, the 81 ha are on Loop Road. Vineyard manager Duncan Cramp established 61 ha in 2003, followed by another 20 ha in 2008. A variety of clones have been employed: 777, 667, 115, 5 , 114, Abel, 10/5, 13, 113 and 6. The soils, rich in minerals, are free-draining loam over schist gravel. As with the other sites in the Bendigo district, it experiences a large diurnal temperature range, this being a factor in the intensity of the fruit.
Two Mud House Pinot Noirs made by Nadine Worley from fruit from the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard were very successful at the recent 2013 N.Z. International Wine Show. The Central Otago Pinot Noir 2012 and ‘Estate’ tier ‘Claim 431’ Central Otago Pinot Noir 2012 both took gold medals, with the former wine taking the trophy for the best Commercial Red Wine. This wine has already won a trophy and three golds at other wine competitions this year. Here, I review the two 2012 Mud House Pinot Noirs from the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard. www.mudhouse.co.nz
FEATURED WINES IN THIS REVIEW
Mud House Central Otago Pinot Noir 2012Pinot Noir from New Zealand - OtagoReview Date : 08-Dec-2013Bright, youthful purple-red colour, very youthful in appearance. The bouquet is fresh, lively and bright with plenty of ripe, cherry, dark raspberry, plum jam, boysenberry and confectionary fruit aromas. This is bold in primary fruit and shows whole berry fermentation. Soft, full, mouthfilling and sweet fruit flavours are the highlight, the palate plush, rounded in texture. The tannin extraction is modest, but fine-grained, and the acidity integral and harmoniously melded in. Lollyish flavours blossom and carry through to a sweet-fruited finish. This is an up-front, accessible and more commercial Pinot Noir to enjoy over the next 4+ years. 18.0+/20 Dec 2013 RRP $27.99 Deep, youthful purple-ruby colour, a little lighter on edge. This has a full nose of fresh, ripe, dark cherry and berry fruits with good depth, revealing black plum, liquorice and spice notes, and some whole berry fermentation jam and confectionary nuances. Medium-bodied, a fine core with focussed fruit flavours of ripe plums, dark cherries and berries, and dark herbs is the feature on the palate. The fruit is supported by a fine-grained, firm-textured line. The acidity is well-balanced, enlivening the fruit sweetness and juicy pastille elements. The palate has good drive and carries to a fine, dry, textural finish with sustained flavours of cherries, jam and herbs. This is a fruit-focussed Pinot Noir with aromatic cherry and plum flavours and a fine, firm flowing palate. Serve with poultry, pork and Asian fare over the next 4+ years. Fruit from the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard in Bendigo, fully-destemmed and fermented with whole berries to 13.5% alc., a portion of the wine aged in French barriques. 18.0-/20 Oct 2013 RRP $27.99
Mud House ‘Claim 431’ ‘Estate’ Central Otago Pinot Noir 2012Pinot Noir from New Zealand - OtagoReview Date : 11-Oct-2013Hand-picked fruit from the ‘Claim 431’ vineyard in Bendigo, destemmed, given a whole soak, and indigenous yeast fermented to 14.3% alc., the wine aged 12 months in 33% new French oak barrels. Very full, dark and deep black-ruby colour with youthful purple hues. This has a full and elegantly concentrated bouquet of ripe black cherry and plum fruit aromas that reveal black mineral, thyme herb and liquorice nuances, along with oak spices, providing attractive detail and complexing interest. Medium-full bodied, a fine and dense core of black cherry and plum fruit flavours unfolds, showing layers of liquorice, spices and herbs, filling the mouth. Very fine-grained tannins and balanced, discreet acidity completes the mouthfeel, allowing the fruit sweetness and richness carry through to a very long, sustained finish blossoming with a fruit and spicy oak amalgam. This is a classy, complete Pinot Noir with concentrated spicy fruit and fine structure. Match with roasted red meats and hard cheeses over the next 6-7 years. 19.0-/20 Oct 2013 RRP $34.99