Amisfield Vineyards is a producer of fine wine from the Lowburn area of New Zealand's Central Otago region. The region is renowned for producing world class Pinot Noir and aromatic white wines.
The 2005 Pinot Noir has a deep crimson/magenta color. The nose suggests candied fruits, intense dark cherry and mocha characters lifted by toasty french oak. The palate shows lovely sweet fruit and it also has a degree of restraint, in part due to our co-fermentation technique. The tannins are abundant but well resolved and fine.
This wine should evolve into another graceful Amisfield Pinot and will reward cellaring for 5-8 years.
"Suave and ripe, with plush depth to Asian spice, roasted duck, wild berry and black cherry flavors. Crushed stone nuances, judicious oak and sinuous tannins streamline the stylish finish. Drink now through 2011." Wine Spectator
Amisfield was established in 1988 and is a Central Otago based specialist producer of pinot noir and aromatic white wines sourced from fruit grown on their Estate vineyard beneath the Pisa Mountain range in the Cromwell Basin. This privately owned company's 200ha property, once a prominent high country merino station, is one of the largest single vineyard estates in the Central Otago region. Over 80ha is currently planted with the majority of the vines being over ten years old.
Amisfield wines reflect the company's grape growing and winemaking philosophy underlining faithful expression of site, minimal winemaking intervention and ultimate fruit purity. Stringent yield management practices deliver concentrated fruit flavor, consistency and complexity derived from the range of soils found on the vineyard.
A state-of-the-art purpose built winery is the focal point of the vineyard and produces 25,000 -30,000 cases of wine annually. Pinot noir accounts for over 60% of the production with the balance made up of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Riesling. Wines are showcased at Amisfield's Lake Hayes Bistro and Cellar Door where more than 60,000 New Zealand and international guests sample the range of vintages every year.
Amisfield is an accredited and committed member of the New Zealand Winegrowers’ Sustainable winegrowing program centering on a quality management system and environmental sustainability.
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The southernmost vineyards of the world lie here in Central Otago. Unlike most other New Zealand appellations, Central Otago is inland - nestled right in the middle of the southern island. Its lack of proximity to water creates weather more continental than maritime, leading to big temperature shifts – hot during the day, significantly cooler at night.
The region's continental climate, paired with the variety of soils found in the area, make Central Otago perfect for growing the finicky Pinot Noir grape. Covering almost 80% of the area planted with vines, Pinot Noir is the dominant grape variety, and the wine it creates from the region is receiving rave reviews for its balanced purity and intensity. Some Chardonnay is grown here, but Pinot is king.
The country of New Zealand is about 1000 miles from the coast of Australia. It consists of two long islands, end to end, that are approximately the same length as California. Most of the country's climate is maritime due to the abundant coastline. The northern island is warmer and wetter, while the southern island is cooler and dryer. The most popular grapes of New Zealand are Sauvignon Blanc (made most famous by the bright, crisp wines coming out of Marlborough), Chardonnay and the ever-growing Pinot Noir.
This is a well ballanced complex wine that should pair well with mixed offerings. Each year I try to choose an interesting wine for Christmas gifts, and the Amisfield Pinot Noir was this year's choice. I'm not wild about the screw cap, even if it is a higher performance closure.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.