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Akarua (Bannockburn), Pinot Noir 2018 (1x75cl)
Country: New Zealand
Region: Central Otago
Grape Variety: Pinot Noir
Bottle Size: 75cl
Product Code: NZCO0044B18S
The 2017 vintage was awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their January 2020 edition article, Most Exciting Wines of 2019 (see blue link below)....
Akarua (Bannockburn) Pinot Noir 2017 - January 2020 Decanter review
... and was awarded 95 points and Gold status at the 2019 IWC (International Wine Challenge) in May 2019 (see blue link below for review and their tasting note).
Akarua Pinot Noir 2017 - IWC 2019 award and review
The Skeggs family were among the first people to buy and plant vineyard land in Central Otago in the mid 1990s, so were lucky enough to acquire a superb north facing site in Bannockburn. Planted in 1996, this 50 hectare site has since provided the backbone of the Akarua wines. Due to the short growing season in Central Otago, site selection is one of the key elements in making a great wine, and Akarua have a site that is among the very best. Akarua was re-introduced after many years to Liberty Wines by Tony Jordan, who makes their sparkling wines. Tony built Domaine Chandon in Australia, and is one of the world's leading experts in sparkling wine production. He has been enamoured with the potential for Central Otago to make top quality fizz for quite a while, and is now doing so with Akarua.
All the Pinot Noir grapes were harvested from Akarua's 50 hectare site on Cairnmuir Road in Bannockburn, which lies at 270 metres above sea level. The soil here is young alluvial schist based sand/silt and sandy loams overlaying schist rock. The vines are 16 years old.
An exceptionally warm, dry spring and early summer saw unusually high early season growth in the vineyards. The summer continued to be hot until the very end of the season, when there was a period of rain and relatively cool daytime temperatures. The harvest began from March 1st, the earliest date in Akarua history.
The grapes were hand picked and 90% were destemmed. Pre-fermentation maceration took place over five days, with temperatures peaking at 31°C. Punch downs took place twice daily and post fermentation maceration lasted six days. The wine spent 10 months in French barriques, 30% of which were new.
100% Pinot Noir.
Deep bright ruby in colour, this wine showcases intense plum and red cherry flavours and the complexity that Bannockburn Pinot Noir is renowned for. On the nose, it has spicy aromas of star anise, nutmeg and cinnamon intermingled with notes of brambles and wild thyme. The palate is elegantly balanced with a tight acidity and an underlying earthiness. Its finely textured tannins lead to a long, smoky finish.