The fruit is sourced from the mature Lowburn Ferry vineyard in Lowburn. Since 2018, this site has been owned by Pyramid Valley and has been renamed Manata Estate. Blessed with some of the oldest vines in Central Otago, the vineyard was founded by Roger and Jean Gibson, and is currently well on its way to organic/biodynamic certification. The site is on a gentle north-facing slope with a mix of clones and 30% own-rooted vines. Soils are predominately loess over deep silts that have developed lime deposits. Hand-harvested and fermented with natural yeasts in open-top fermenters and wooden cuves, this time with 20% whole bunches and then aged in French oak barriques and cuves for around 11 months (20% new). Pure, lifted aromas of thyme and red cherries waft from the glass, underscored by an alluring spice-like complexity. Beautifully weighted, the wine's soft, silky texture and wispy, fine-grained tannins surround bright red fruits, while crunchy acidity gifts freshness and length.
Brilliant with Pan-Asian roast duck or roasted lamb rump with a cherry glaze.
Varietal / Blend: Pinot Noir
Closure: Screw cap
Farming Practices: Practising Organics & Biodynamics
Pyramid Valley founders, Mike and Claudia Weersing, were driven to create one of the new world’s great cool-climate vineyards. The Weersings finally found their special place in the southern hemisphere, within a barren chain of limestone-rich scarps at Waikari in North Canterbury.
Inspiring all who came into their orbit, over another 15 years Mike and Claudia emerged as New Zealand pioneers of both biodynamic practices and high-density viticulture. Their minute scale and exceptional dedication to their soils and vines led to some incredible wines being produced. In 2017, Mike and Claudia were moved to make the tough decision to sell. There was of course a large amount of interest but they chose to pass the baton onto Steve Smith MW (previously of Craggy Range) and his partner Brian Sheth.
Smith brought in Huw Kinch from Martinborough’s Escarpment as Estate Manager and Winemaker. Kinch was already a huge fan, believing that Pyramid Valley’s Chardonnays were among the most profound examples he had tasted. Nick Paulin then joined from Central Otago, where he had been introduced to biodynamic viticulture under Blair Walter at Felton Road (before stints at Peregrine and Lowburn Ferry). We believe with the wines we have seen so far, there are very exciting times ahead!