Dirty Pinot

One of my bosses recently asked me to taste a bottle of Pinot that we import from New Zealand.  I asked him why and he indicated that there were a few people who recently let him know that they didn’t like it – it wasn’t fruity.

Anyone who knows my wine preferences or has been reading my blog long enough knows that I don’t particularly care for the new style of Pinot – big, rich, clean & fruity.  Those California Pinots getting the high scores – I can’t stand them.

Back to the New Zealand Pinot  – I was also showed a response by the winemaker to an inquiry about the wine from my boss.  It was really brilliantly written by a talented winemaker who has been making New Zealand Pinot for about 20 years.  In essence he said that Pinot is a strange and oftentimes unpredictable animal – ever evolving between clean pure red fruit to earthy, barnyardy & even a flat out dirty wine.

It is that Pinot complexity and unpredictability that attracts me and I would suspect so many others to the varietal.  As wine coincidences would have it, I recently read a piece by Robin Garr in the 30 Second Wine Advisor.  Garr’s “Pinot Theory of Evolution” speaks to Pinots amazing evolution in the glass… and I couldn’t agree more.

I am often blown away by the Burgundy I taste with my wine club.  The good ones are elegant, (not overpowering like so many new world Pinots), multi-dimensional (so many different characteristics) & complex (changing in the glass over time).  Sadly, Pinot is a tough animal and as good as the good ones are, that is how bad the bad ones are.

I tried that Pinot my boss asked me to taste and you know what, it was somewhat Burgundian in style…and it was spectacular!

Happy dirty & evolving Pinot Wine Tasting!


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