I had the opportunity to taste this wine blind and here is what I discovered.
Great colour and clarity, one of those pinots that look sensational in the glass – mid-ruby colour with lovely reflections. The aromas explode from the glass when it is first poured and are redolent of abundant mixed red fruits. Unfortunately after time in the glass the aroma becomes more subtle but with some spice and candied fruit notes showing through.
The plate is highly fruit driven with intense raspberry, cherry and blueberry. There is little savoury or spice evident with the powerful sweet fruit dominating the palate. The wine has nice acid backing the fruit but the tannins are so transparent to be almost non-existant. It finishes in a linear fashion with moderate but satisfactory length.
I picked the wine as being Chilean- more luck than experience but also it was so clearly new world but unlike Australian, NZ or North American pinots that I am more familiar with. The label, when disclosed, confirmed its origin from the Casablanca Valley in Aconcagua region of Chile. Located 75 km northwest of Santiago, the Casablanca Valley was first planted to vine in the mid-1980s and is fast gaining world-wide recognition. The Valley provides a cool Mediterranean climate with pronounced maritime influence. Proximity to the ocean produces just over 500 mm of rain per year and creates cool foggy mornings which help keep the average daily temperatures low but reduce sunlight hours and can extend ripening periods.
The wine comes from producer, Con Sur whose corporate by-line is “no family trees, no dusty bottles, just quality wine”; distancing its self from tradition and the ‘old world’. This pinot clearly meets this objective. Interestingly their website suggest that the pinot has undergone carbonic maceration which is more typically used in Beaujolais but, depending on the extent and techniques used, would account for the intense fruit aroma and palate.
Many thanks to MBF for supplying this interesting wine and suggesting I try it blind.