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April '23

2014 TarraWarra Reserve Pinot Noir

Our first love, Pinot Noir.

We can't go past our first love, Pinot Noir, and this month the 2014 TarraWarra Reserve Pinot Noir is a real-deal exclusive. Thank your lucky stars, we here at One Wine are obsessed with pinot noir, and love finding you the super special wines to share with your (self) *cough* loved ones each month. 

A cracker of a vintage (warmer during harvest), with gentle warmth throughout the ripening months allowing for beautifully pure flavours. A wine made with meticulous detail from the then-team, Clare Hollaran, Adam McCallum, and viticulturist, Stuart Sissins, plus don't forget Ned, his loyal kelpie!

To quote James Halliday, "TarraWarra is, and always has been one of the top-tier wineries in the Yarra Valley" and we're delighted to bring you this exceptionally great pinot noir this month, not only to celebrate TarraWarra's 40th year, but to make sure you're drinking the wine of the season... pinot noir means Autumn in our books. Are you with us?

Yarra Valley main-stayer

The Yarra Valley, just one hour north-east of Melbourne, Victoria, is best known for exceptional pinot noir, chardonnay, shiraz (and syrah), and cabernet sauvignon. TarraWarra was first planted back in 1983, to chardonnay and pinot noir - the wines of Burgundy. The owners were inspired by local legend winemakers to do so, and now look to those vines for the winery's flagship wines, made only in exceptional years.

Celebrating 40 years this year, TarraWarra is best known amongst locals, and internationally, for exceptional pinot noir and chardonnay, alongside other single-block heritage varietals and estate blends. TarraWarra Estate always finds a way to leave an impression, and with their 2014 Reserve Pinot Noir, its left quite a good one on us! 

A quick drive from Melbourne, visit the Cellar Door and you'll find yourself on a deck shaded by native peppercorn trees, expansive views of their lush grounds, and their Museum of Art. Wine-drinking perfection we think, have you been?

“30yo MV6 and 25yo D5V12 estate clones separately fermented and matured, 12 days on skins, matured in French oak (25% new). Clear crimson hue; a truly delicious wine built around a heart of fresh red cherries and red berries, with gossamer silk tannins and perfectly judged French oak. This will change as it ages, with more foresty nuances, but will never be better than it is now.”

96 points
James Halliday

Halliday Wine Companion

Yarra Valley Burgundy do I hear?

The 2014 TarraWarra Reserve Pinot Noir, combines supreme fruit parcels after they were aged in separate barrels, blended only in the final stages of oak maturation. Intended to express the truest form of the varietal nuances. This wine uses the select parcels hailing from the winery's H-Block, now 30+ years old, these the vines produce consistently exceptional quality pinot noir. The soil on this block is low yielding, but encourages optimal vine balance and vigour. 

 In the glass, its a vibrant and perfumed wine, aromas of ripe raspberries, rose petals, plum and restrained toasted cedar oak. With delicately fine tannins and a crisp acidity, the wine continues to lead the palate with an earthy savouriness. It continues with dried flowers, black cherry stone, dark chocolate and a powdery red-brick dustiness. A complex and powerful wine, it's already got nine years behind it, but there’s plenty of potential here to develop further with age (recommended drinking window to 2030). With those looking to enjoy this wine now, try decanting for an hour or so prior to drinking to let it wake up after it's almost decade-long slumber.

Pinot noir: The black pine cone

The name originally coming from French word for “pine” (pinot), as the grape bunches grow in pine cone-shaped clusters, and “black” (noir), is a reference to the grapes darker hue (tends to be).

Noted as being one of the most difficult grapes to grow, the pinot noir grape has quite the thin skin. Making it susceptible to disease and infections in the vineyard. Things like frost, warmer weather (sunburn is a thing!), and above-average rainfall (the grapes can burst) all stress this delectable little grape out. Through all these struggles and potential damage, and disease, it's no wonder we have a soft spot for a decent pinot. They're often a delicate, yet complex wine...some say a pinot wears it's heart on it's sleeve. Meaning, much like some other light-medium bodied wines, how the fruit has been treated throughout harvest, maceration, fermentation, selecting oak (or otherwise) for maturing, then lastly bottling and aging the wine before release, all leave brush-stokes on their Picasso.

Quintessentially, pinot noir is a light to medium-bodied red wine, and can have a herbaceous undertone, almost always very crisp natural acidity, red cherry, and other red berry fruit aromas. They tend to be delicate and floral, and in aged examples, they lean towards a forest-floor, earthy-spice, more savoury and tobacco aromas. Aging a pinot noir has long been something only pinot lovers do. As most prefer the ripe juicy, red, and black cherry fruit aromas of a younger pinot. But, with age, a pinot noir can often develop a leaner, lighter hue. It can exhibit a light browning to the outer edge of your glass of wine. Bringing with it an earthy, vegetal (almost beetroot-like) tendency. Cooler aromas likened to wet leaves, and earthen forest floor, adds a savouriness to the wine, and is often used to describe pinots with five+ years on them (since the bottles vintage on the label, not from bottling). 

Next time you're out ordering a pinot noir from a wine list, you might get asked if you prefer a ripe, fleshy, juicy pinot (often younger), or a more savoury, earthier style (often older) – this should help you figure out firstly what that could mean, but also, which you prefer!

The flavours of autumm

As the leaves change and the weather gets cooler, we crave comforting and flavourful dishes that highlight the best of autumn flavours. Our 2014 TarraWarra Reserve Pinot Noir is perfect for this time of year. For a hearty and comforting dish, we recommend Mum's famous Beef Bourguignon. The tender beef, stewed in red wine and herbs, and served with roasted root vegetables, will complement the earthy and spicy notes in the wine. If you're looking to embrace the season of mushrooms, keep it simple with roasted wild mushrooms tossed in garlic, herbs, and lots of butter. Autumn is truly our favourite time of the year as we embrace crisp mornings and cool, dark evenings (insert crackling fire here). Whether you're feeling inspired to cook or just looking to sip something delicious with a simple cheese plate (we recommend gruyere or comte), this is the perfect bottle to decant and savour.


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