Friday, 1 February 2013

Peregrine Pinot Noir 2010, Central Otago

Wandering round through different styles of wine is always fun. I tasted Peregrine at an Old and New World tasting of Pinot Noir, highlighting the differences between the two styles, with the general rule being that Old World PNs tend to be more savoury and New World PNs tend to be fruitier.

Nose: There's a slightly musty nose here. Perhaps a hint of mushroom or tobacco coming in to slightly overpower a hint of fresh cherry. Oddly enough, there's a touch of cedarwood and then some pepper near the end. This is a much more savoury Pinot Noir than I was expecting - on first impression I had this down as a Burgundy, and a good one at that.

Palate: I'm afraid to say it was rather bitter. There was none of the rich fruit backed by spice that I was expecting. There's cherry, but it tastes like unripe cherry - it's sharp and yet musty at the same time. Pepper is present throughout but there's an unpleasant chalkiness to the wine. While I have since read reviews saying this flavour was an example of good minerality, to me it wasn't minerality in the classic sense - it was chalky and mouth-drying, and added little to the wine. Perhaps if I'm being optimistic I might be able to find some raspberry, but I'm not entirely sure that I actually tasted it or if it was simply wishful thinking looking for something to like.

Body: Surprisingly for a Pinot Noir this felt remarkably tannic. The sharp furriness coming from the musty unripe cherry added to this sensation and made for a not very pleasant drink.

Finish: Almost no finish. This was extremely short and very one-dimensional.

Conclusion: When the cover was taken off I was deeply disappointed to find a wine so highly regarded had disappointed me so much. At £25, it's not cheap either. Perhaps I ought to have left it open for longer, but even after 2 hours I don't recall noting any positive changes. My only note from the later tasting is 'The nose is the only redeeming factor'. What a shame

Points: 70. Not a fan. I shall have to re-taste to confirm this opinion at some point, but when there are so many better Kiwi Pinot Noirs out there, why waste the time and money on this? The vastly superior Kota Lime Rock (which I will review in due course) blasted this out of the water for a perfect mix of savouriness and fruitiness.

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