Smuggler's Boot, Pinot Noir 750ml 2015South Africa, Elgin
The current vintage has yet to be tasted, the notes below are from the previous vintage:
'Attractive strawberry, savoury and star anise spice linger on the nose. Juicy and sumptuous on the mid palate with breadth of flavour offset by a nimbleness of fresh acidity, friable tannins and sinuous mouthfeel, this Pinot unwraps to earthy, fennel, chocolate and a hint of incense to a long supple finish.' – Winemaker
An exceptionally wet and cold winter resulted in excellent winter dormancy. Further wet and cold conditions continued late into spring retarding budburst by several weeks. Although disease incidence was higher, the warmer weather that eventually arrived in December enabled the vines to recover. An incredibly wet January kept growers on their toes but February’s warm, sunny weather allowed véraison to proceed late but under ideal conditions. The wet soils meant that growth was put into shoots rather than bunches, which despite hindering sugar accumulation, did mean an excellent slow phenolic ripeness made even slower by cooler conditions in early March. This double whammy of slow flavour accrual and preservation of high natural acidity has meant 2014 is one of the most elegant and delicate vintages released with lower alcohols and finer tannins.
Handpicked grapes were first bunch sorted on a conveyor before the stems were removed and the destemmed berries sorted to remove jacks and substandard berries. After a 3-day maceration in 500kg open-topped fermenters, the uncrushed grapes began a spontaneous fermentation. A gentle pigeage program was charted and the grapes remained on skins for 10-16 days. The free-run wine was racked to a combination of 50% French oak barrels (10% new) and 50% breathable plastic eggs with the remaining pomace basket-pressed. Malolactic then proceeded followed by a light sulphuring after which the wine was racked off Malolactic lees and returned to cleaned barrels for an 11-month maturation. No finings were necessary.
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AG: Antonio Galloni of Vinous.com | AM: Allen Meadows of Burghound.com | CE: Christian Eedes of Winemag.co.za | DEC: Decanter | GS: Greg Sherwood MW | JR: JancisRobinson.com | NM: Neal Martin of Vinous.com OM: Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show | PG: Platter's Guide | ST: Stephen Tanzer of Vinous.com | TA: Tim Atkin MW | VIN: Vinous.com | WA: Wine Advocate | WE: Wine Enthusiast | WM: Winemag.co.za Report | WS: Wine Spectator