Pegasus Bay Pinot Noir 2018
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PRODUCER: The Donaldson Family have been seriously involved in viticulture and winemaking for over 40 years. Founder Ivan Donaldson planted the first Canterbury vineyard in 1976 and went on to establish Pegasus Bay in 1986 with his wife Christine. It is a true family business, with all four of their sons and two spouses involved, managing various aspects.
WINEMAKING: Traditional Burgundian winemaking methods were used to make this wine. They picked the various blocks at different stages, depending on their maturity, aiming for a range of red and dark fruit flavours. Approximately one third of the grapes were put at the bottom of the fermentation vats as whole bunches, with the balance being destemmed on top, retaining as many whole berries as possible. The vats were kept cool over the next few days to help extract the soft, silky tannins from the Pinot Noir skins. After approximately a week the must started to ferment naturally. During fermentation, the floating cap of grape skins was gently plunged twice daily. When the fermentation finished, the grape remnants were left to steep in the wine for up to a week to help extract a different range of tannins that add structure and depth. The exact duration of this period was determined by daily tasting. Subsequently the wine was gently pressed off and put into oak barriques (40% new) from selected artisan Burgundian coopers. In the summer after harvest, when the weather warmed, the wine underwent a natural malo-lactic (secondary) fermentation. After maturing for 18 months in these barriques, the batches made from the many different plots and clones of Pinot were carefully blended in varying portions to produce the most complex and balanced wine possible.
TASTING NOTE: Upon release the wine is bright ruby in colour. On the nose there is a brooding melange of dark cherry, boysenberry, and poached plums, interlaced with spicy notes and a hint of potpourri. The palate is classically structured and refined, with a plush texture and sumptuous mouthfeel. Ripe velvety tannins work harmoniously alongside well-balanced acidity, setting up for a long and persistent finish.