2014 Charteris The Winter Vineyard Pinot Noir
After 2 seasons of pruning the Winter vineyard site in Bannockburn I have a pretty good idea of where every boulder and rabbit burrow are across the block, not to mention how different parts of the vineyard grow. This is a tiny block of land that is split over 3 distinct parts, the Loams (0.24 Hectares of 777 Clone) at the top of the block, the Terraces (0.15 Hectares of 115 Clone) which separate the upper and lower blocks and the Gravels (0.6 Hectares of 115 and Abel Clones) which run down to the Kauwarau River. There is an altitude change of about 25 metres between the top and bottom blocks and the soils vary dramatically, as the names suggest, across the blocks. With the healthy growing season and good crop, we did not need to go outside this vineyard for additional fruit for the 2014 harvest. The exciting side of this is the opportunity to take different parts of the vineyard with a different clonal makeup and treat them differently in the winery. Over time this vineyard has taught me a lot about natural tannin and tannin management in the finished wines. How and to what degree we work on tannin extraction as well as the effect on the final wine and its trajectory to maturity have become apparent with more experience. One thing we learnt from the 2013 Winter Vineyard cuvee was not to rush things and as a result we have waited 5 years to release our 2014 vintage. The results, another layer of understanding in the rich tapestry we know as Bannockburn Pinot Noir.