It was a warm season with above-average temperatures in December and January. Mid-season conditions were very calm with low wind-run and no significant rainfall, so the season was tracking well ahead of usual timing. Some rain, and then overall milder conditions in
February and March meant ripening slowed favourably towards harvest. The 2018 harvest was the earliest to date commencing 13th March (we finished picking Moonlight Race on 27th); however, those late-season conditions had helped to give lovely ripeness whilst retaining balance and finesse.
The wine is a 50:50 blend from our Burn Cottage Vineyard in Cromwell and Sauvage Vineyard in Bannockburn. It brings together eight different clones from six blocks on the former, with five Pinot Noir clones from the latter. The grapes were picked at an average Brix of 23.7. The ferments contained 15% whole bunches, and the wine was matured in oak barrels (19% new) from the Damy, Mercurey and Sylvain cooperages.
Wonderful savoury and herb tones are supported by spice, red fruit, pepper and mineral complexity. Supple and elegant, the wine is focused with a lovely freshness and fine smooth tannin extending the palate. Cellaring potential to seven years. - Claire Mulholland, Burn Cottage