Elgin Valley is renowned for Pinot Noir due to its cooler climate and is one of the most captivating and complex of wines.
Burgundy is home to the world’s best Pinot Noirs. The region’s cool climate and limestone-based soils are perfectly suited to the production of Pinot and the best examples have grip, complexity and intense, pure fruit
Much lighter in colour and tannins with fresh acidity, Pinots are loaded with red fruit aromas such as cherries, raspberries and strawberries. As the wine ages, Pinot develops savoury notes of wild mushroom and cured meats as they age that can contribute to the complexity of the wine.
This thin-skinned grape is a notoriously temperamental variety and is often describe as a naughty child. It is a varietal that relies on aromatic deliveries to capture your attention. It is not a wine that relies on tannins and big structure.
The name, derived from the French words that mean “pine” and “black”, refers to the compact conical shape of the grape bunches that resemble a pine cone and the dark colour of the berries.
Our weekend at Elgin Cool Climate and Country Food Festival kicked off at Shannon Vineyards with a Pinot Noir vertical tasting conducted by none other than James Downes. We got to taste 6 vintages of the Rockview Ridge Pinot Noir – each with their own personality, style and taste. We started off with the youngest to the oldest from 2017 to 2012.
The Rockview Ridge Pinot Noir is a blend of 3 of their main vineyards. As the vineyards get older and have more structure, older Dijon clones are used. Dijon Clones is a blend of Pinot Noir clones representing a collage of vineyard blocks. A clone is a vegetative propagation from a single parent plant.
ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2017
Flavours of vibrant raspberry, strawberry, currant and cherry on the palate. The palate is full and persistent, boasting an elevated freshness that adds wonderful balance. Smooth tannins provide a glossy concentration on the mid-palate that results in a lingering finishing and a subtly spiced aftertaste.
ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2016
A deliciously expressive wine, the Rockview Ridge Pinot Noir from Shannon Vineyards, displays brilliant vibrancy with its fruit-driven palate. Expect to encounter luscious notes of raspberry, cherry and blackcurrant on the nose and palate alongside deeper aromas of liquorice and cinnamon. The palate is full and persistent, boasting an elevated freshness that adds wonderful balance. Smooth tannins provide a glossy concentration on the mid-palate that results in a lingering finishing and a subtly spiced aftertaste.
ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2015
On the palate this soft yet structured Pinot Noir displays distinctive Pinot Noir varietal character’s of game, forest floor, and cherry. The wine has layers of red and dark fruit flavours, and spice that layers itself over dark chocolate, liquorice and blackberry and finishes with silky tannins making this wine a pleasure to drink.
ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2014
A particularly charming wine with fruity aromas. This wine has the classic plum berry fruit and spice clove aromas, typical of Pinot Noir, following on to an aftertaste of cranberry, strawberry and cherry fruits. Perfectly elegant wine that shows good intensity and a lengthy finish.
ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2013
The 2013 Rockview Ridge Pinot Noir displays typical Burgundian complexity, with ripe cherry, raspberry and strawberry notes backed by hints of truffle, mushroom and spice. The wine is elegant and textured with a firm lively structure, smooth ripe tannins, terrain-driven minerality and impressive purity of fruit. Rich and complex, this Pinot Noir has great depth and long, lingering power at the finish.
ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2012
This wine expresses a range of flavours from vibrant cherry, raspberry, black currants, to liquorice and cinnamon. This wine reveals a complex and well-rounded mouthfeel with a persistent, lingering and smooth finish.
As with the Sanctuary Peak Sauvignon Blanc and the Mount Bullet, the Rockview Ridge Pinot Noir is named after the peak above the vineyards. Shannon Vineyards wines are sold under the name Downes Family Vineyards in the USA.
Tastings by appointment only.
Monday through to Friday.
Preferably 10h00 till 13h00.
Unfortunately not open over weekends.
Tel: 021 859 2491