Antica Terra Botanica Pinot Noir 2012

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photoThe bedrock and boulders of Antica Terra are as odd as the vines, which unlike most old-vines are skinny and fragile, and the seedless berries they birth. The beautiful hand-drawn labels are perhaps my favourite in wine and express the style of winemaking – Maggie Harrison having learned to make wine while working with Manfred Krankl using a ‘felt’ technique rather than technical knowledge. Everything she does is by intuition, etching an imperfect but beautifully distinctive vision. It is personality not construct that wins here.

The Botanica is a richer style of Pinot Noir that is a blend of the Shea Vineyard, Stephen Hagen’s vineyard near Junction City, and the 30 year old vines of the estate vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills. These are not the wines of Sine Qua Non, they are far more ethereal, being made in a much more liminal climate, and they focus more on acid than extract. Each vintage they seem to get more refined and more balanced.

My Notes

Quite ripe smelling with rich cherry fruit and a lot of density. The fresh palate is very mouth watering, with lots of strawberry and cherry fruit. The wine is at the quality level (though not similar in flavour) of top 1er cru Burgundy and in that context it’s actually fairly priced. It’s rich but not at all heavy and is very balanced due to the proper structure and fine but clearly present tannin. Long, impressive finish.This is large Pinot done extremely well.

Excellent to Excellent+
$95 at marquis

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