The 2016 vintage was our driest growing year in recent wine cultivation history. Fruit set was above average, and combined with good heat accumulation the resulting wine certainly shows ample concentration. Care was exercised in maintaining yield, approximately four tonnes/ha, and vigilant winegrowing techniques enabled ripening of what I consider to be a classic and refined Dry River Pinot noir.
Immediately red currant, strawberries and plum fruit deliver an aromatic hit. Though primary red fruit are visibly dominant, there is more to be found; Christmas spices, rosehip and floral notes like lilies and freshly cut hay are the more obvious characters that we see. The supporting role of the oak intensifies the underlying tobacco and caramel notes.
The palate shows a youthful intensity with a tendency to speak with great clarity. However, another more serene voice commands the fruit to spread out and surrender to the maze of tannins and juicy acidity that ascends from underneath. They bring a degree of order and longevity through their ripe phenolic compounds. The restrained power and silky, linear tannins are strikingly intricate and invite further examination.
Like most of our Pinot noirs, the 2016 wine requires three to five years additional evolution for optimum drinking pleasure.