2019 Bannockburn Serre Pinot Noir

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The iconic Serré vineyard is a 1.2-hectare site planted in 1984 and 1986 exclusively to the MV6 clone. The soils here have volcanic surface material, with darker clay over weathered basalt and limestone. It is close-planted at 9000 vines per hectare and trellised low with narrow rows.

The 2019 includes parcels of whole-bunch, whole berry, and extended maceration, all fermented wild. It matured for 10 months in French oak hogsheads and was racked to tank before bottling. Even though it’s made precisely like the Bannockburn Pinot Noir above, the Serré is a different beast. It’s tightly coiled and takes a few minutes in the glass to unfurl its inner core of pure and focussed black cherry fruit, layered with clove, star anise and peppercorn spice. The mouthfeel is all sinuous grace, slowly saturating the palate with a subtle and beguiling amalgam of dark cherry and wild black raspberry. The tannins are firm yet silky, and the acidity bright. Campbell’s “stunning” description hits the nail on the head.

“Stunning pinot noir. Complex, confident, silken and sustained. So much earth, so much undergrowth, so much sweet, meaty spice and such positive traces of twigs and wood. But it’s the fruit, cherried, beet-like, ripe at low alcohol levels, suede soft, convincing, that really shines and really gets the job done. We’re in elite territory here.” 

95 points, Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front