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2016 Ninth Island Pinot Noir

Cracka Value Rating
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Cracka Review

The original premium Tasmanian Pinot Noir, this has always been a bright and open sort of Pinot, produced in a deliberately approachable style that has always seen this appear on well healed BBQ spreads around the nation (possibly alongside a salad that didn't come out of a packet). Aside from a fraction more concentration, this has got everything you'd want in a Pinot too.

Winemaker's Notes

Ninth Island Pinot Noir showcases our cool climate vineyard sites in the North of Tasmania.

The Vineyard: Produced from grapes grown at Pipers Brook and at Strathlynn on the west bank of the Tamar River, 70km away. Northeast sites are close to Bass Strait and are subject to strong maritime influences. The Tamar Valley’s hillside slopes offer vines some protection from prevailing westerly winds, promoting warm, settled conditions for much of the growing season. The West Tamar also has surprisingly low rainfall. Sites around Pipers Brook feature Ferrosol (volcanic) soils, while those in the Tamar Valley are Vertosol (black cracking clay) soils. Both soil types have excellent water holding capacity, offering a steady supply of moisture and nourishment to the vines throughout the growing season. Pioneering clonal selection gives consistency of up front fruit and palate balance from old vine material. These 30 year old vines give low yields with increase concentration and flavour. Predominantly Vertical Shoot Positioned (VSP) trellises, which expose bunches to the sun, thus achieving full maturity with well-balanced flavours and fine, ripe tannins.

Winemaking: Harvested during the cool early morning temperatures, the grapes were de-stemmed and crushed without delay. The crushed fruit was allowed to soak at cool temperatures for 2-3 days, then inoculated and fermented at between 25-30°C in stainless vessels. The wine was gently pressed off skins prior to full malolactic fermentation. Bottled early under screw cap to preserve intensely perfumed aromas and rich, vibrant fruit with soft velvety tannins.

Tasting Notes: Expressive aromas of raspberry, boysenberry with spice and hints of black cherry. Concentrated flavours of blackberry and cherry with elements of cedar and lasting savoury spice. Abundant berry fruit and fine structure, perfectly suited for early enjoyment.

Food Match: Its food matches are endless. Try it with Asian and Mediterranean dishes with a slight sweetness, such as duck with plum sauce, rack of lamb, grilled salmon or barbecued Asian spiced octopus.

Cellaring Potential: Up to 5 years.

Alc/vol: 13.0%

expert reviews about

2016 Ninth Island Pinot Noir

Expert Reviews

Nick Stock (2011 Vintage) says
A one-off release of a double-declassified pinot noir batch, with the climatic conditions making the challenge to achieve estate grade insurmountable. The nose has brambly, ripe cherry fruit notes ahead of sappy bracken and a fresh, grassy edge. The palate s got some weight and shape, and sturdy tannins arrive in a wall of brambly red and darker berry fruit flavour. Satisfying and actually quite complex.
Good Wine Guide
Tyson Stelzer (2011 Vintage) says
This wine exemplifies the adage that opportunity comes out of adversity, and I can only guess that some serious declassification from Pipers Brook’s more senior pinot noirs has lifted its lowest tier wine in this challenging season. If elegance is to be prized above impact, this is a remarkable pinot for the price. It’s unashamedly light- to medium-bodied, yet anything it lacks in weight it more than compensates for in refinement and exactness of pink pepper, fragrant rose hip, strawberry, red cherry and raspberry nuances of impressive line and carry. Charged with tangy acidity and beautifully textured, finely structured tannins, this is the perfect summer lunchtime red. Drink it as you might Beaujolais.
Wine Taste Edition 97
James Halliday (2010 Vintage) says
Bright colour; bright red cherry bouquet, offset by herbaceous notes of mint and spice; the palate is driven by taut acidity, and almost gravelly tannins to conclude.
Australian Wine Companion 2012
Nick Stock (2010 Vintage) says
A straightforward light, bright and tangy pinot noir that offers early-Drinking appeal. The nose carries wild strawberries and leafy herbal hints. The palate brings a little extra tannin chew, chirpy acid and a fresh, crisp finish.
The Good Wine Guide
James Halliday (2009 Vintage) says
Light but very bright colour; fragrant spicy red fruits, then a tangy palate that has plenty of drive and energy. Very reliable wine.
Australian Wine Companion 2012
Nick Stock (2009 Vintage) says
Poached strawberry here, some light spice and a warm raspberry aroma, really nicely framed in light herbs, too, with some musky perfume at the edges. The palate has meaty flavour, some bright acid crunch, light, lacy tannins and easy-going charm.
The Good Wine Guide
James Halliday (2008 Vintage) says
Good colour hue and depth; fragrant and vibrant, with abundant red fruits and a touch of forest floor/sap to add interest.
Australian Wine Companion 2010 2009
Campbell Mattinson & Gary Walsh (2008 Vintage) says
Ninth Island was one of the first 'value' pinot noirs to shake up the Australian pinot market. It's still doing the business. Oh, lots of character here! Full of lovely pencilly, earthy, peppery flavours on a core of bright, cherried fruit. You'd almost call it Euro-styled. It's a pulpy (don't mention the mill), generous wine with the enjoyment factor turned to high. There's a bit of sex-on-a-forest-floor funkiness here -or put it this way: it's not a technocratic wine; it's a wine that rocks and rolls.
The Big Red Wine Book 2009/10 2009
Nick Stock (2007 Vintage) says
This is a dense and spicy pinot that speaks of its cool-climate origin with some cooler herbs and cherries, fine bright fragrance and a hint of pepper. The tannins are taut and chewy, a distinctive regional Tasmanian pinot of good depth and density; bold and confident.
Good Australian Wine Guide 2009 2008
James Halliday (2007 Vintage) says
Bright colour; fragrant and pure pinot, presented without adornment, simply because it doesn't need it. Small wonder it is one of the best value pinots on the market today.
Australian Wine Companion 2010 2009
James Halliday (2006 Vintage) says
Some minty notes to the bouquet over a substrate of red fruits; plenty of substance and structure to the palate, with plum, spice and cherry fruit, excellent value
Australian Wine Companion 2009 2008
James Halliday (2004 Vintage) says
Strong colour; considerable power and density to plum and black cherry fruit; good tannin, structure and length; will flower further as it softens.
Australian Wine Companion 2006 2005
James Halliday (2003 Vintage) says
Nice texture and weight; plum, soft spice and a touch of stem; good length.
Australian Wine Companion 2005 2004
James Halliday (2002 Vintage) says
Medium to full red-purple; clean plummy fruit aromas lead into a palate with considerable richness and ripeness, the plummy fruit of the bouquet supported by sweet, soft tannins. Neither particularly complex, nor particularly long, but right now a pleasure to drink.
Australian Wine Companion 2004 2003
James Halliday (2001 Vintage) says
Very good, deep colour for Pinot Noir; lots of ripe plummy fruit in a direct mode, then a touch of spice on the bouquet; the palate, likewise, has above average depth, and Ninth Island must have threaded the needle vintage-wise. The mouthfeel is still on the firm side, and a year or so in bottle will improve the wine out of sight.
Australian Wine Companion 2003 2002

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