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Felton Road Block 3 Pinot Noir 2010

Pinot Noir from Central Otago, New Zealand
  • RP93
  • WE92
  • W&S92
14% ABV
  • JS95
  • JS97
  • WS93
  • RP93
  • JS96
  • RP93
  • WS91
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14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Immediately quite masculine on the nose: herbs, earth and brooding dark spices rather than a flower basket. The palate is at once intensely concentrated but with searing transparency. The herbs dance through the raspberry and cherry, with a host of complex detail shining through that encourages one to linger and explore. Regal and structured, but not intimidating, it sails into a long chocolate finish.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Deep ruby-purple colored, the 2010 Block 3 Pinot Noir has notes of black cherries, plums, graphite, red currant, damp loam and dark chocolate with a whiff of anise. Elegantly fruited in the medium bodied mouth, it is tight-knit and restrained at the moment offering muscular blackberry fruit, a medium-firm level of fine grained tannins and a long earthy finish. Approachable now, it should drink best 2012 to 2019+.
93+ Points
WE 92
Wine Enthusiast
Winemaker Blair Walter has dialed up the intensity in this powerfully concentrated bottling, which packs ample black-cherry fruit and sturdy notes of hickory smoke, cured meat and dark coffee. Despite the wine’s considerable weight, the tannins are supple enough to make it approachable now.
W&S 92
Wine & Spirits
Luxuriously rich, this pinot noir coasts through dark extract while shining a bright carmine red light over its full fruit. The flavors range from blackberry to plum skin, pulled back into light by a floral character. Felton Road farms its Elms Vineyard under biodynamics, selecting this benchland parcel for its deep sandy loam, an alluvial fan derived from schist under a layer of loess. Block 3 consistently produces one of the great pinot noirs of Central Otago.
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Felton Road

Felton Road

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Felton Road, , New Zealand
Felton Road
Felton Road Wines Ltd, in Bannockburn, Central Otago, New Zealand, has planted some of the world's southernmost vineyards. The expression, "growing on the edge," has real meaning in Central Otago, with the lowest rainfall and lowest temperatures of any agricultural region in New Zealand.

Central Otago is located on the southern end of New Zealand's South Island (latitude 45º south) and shares with Oregon (45º north) similar viticultural challenges: late frosts in Spring, early frost in Autumn, a growing season that may be curtailed overnight. Yet the climates of both are surprisingly similar to Burgundy's Côte d'Or: hot in summer, cold in winter. Central Otago is New Zealand's only wine region with a continental - rather than maritime - climate, which results in greater diurnal and seasonal shifts in temperature.

Marlborough

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Home to perhaps the world’s most easily recognizable Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough has a unique terroir that lends a unifying thread to all of its wines. But despite common misconceptions, the wines from this region at the northern tip of New Zealand’s South Island are anything but homogenous. With well-draining stony soils and a dry, sunny climate, the vineyards of Marlborough benefit from wide temperature fluctuations between day and night, which helps to preserve natural acidity in their fruit.

The region’s specialty, Sauvignon Blanc, is beloved for its pungent, aromatic character with notes of exotic tropical fruit, freshly cut grass, and green bell pepper along with a refreshing streak of stony minerality. These wines are made in a wide range of styles, and winemakers take advantage of various clones and vineyards sites as well as fermentation, lees-stirring, and aging regimens to differentiate their bottlings from one another. Also produced successfully here are fruit-forward Pinot Noirs, elegant Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Gewürztraminer, and a wide range of Chardonnay styles, as well as more experimental varieties like Grüner Veltliner and Syrah.

Sauvignon Blanc

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A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character, Sauvignon Blanc is responsible for a vast array of wine styles. A couple of commonalities always exist, however—namely, zesty acidity and intense aromatics. The variety is of French provenance, and is important in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It also shines in New Zealand and California, while Chile and South Africa are excellent sources of high-quality, value-priced Sauvignon Blanc. High-quality Sauvignon Blanc is also produced in Washington State, Australia, and parts of northern Italy.

In the Glass

From its homeland in the Loire Valley, where citrus, flinty, and smoky flavors shine through in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume, to Marlborough, New Zealand, where it is pungent, racy, and “green” (think grass, leaves, gooseberries, and bell peppers) and tastes of grapefruit and passionfruit, Sauvignon Blanc has something to offer every wine drinker. In Bordeaux, it is typically blended with Sémillon and Muscadelle to produce a softer, richer style. In California, any of the aforementioned styles can be emulated.

Perfect Pairings

The freshness of Sauvignon Blanc’s flavor—from bell pepper and cut grass to passionfruit, gooseberry, and ripe kiwi lend it to a range of light, summery dishes including salad, seafood, and mild Asian dishes. Sauvignon Blanc settles in comfortably at the table with notoriously difficult foods like goat cheese and asparagus. When combined with Sémillon (and perhaps some oak), it can be paired with more complex seafood and chicken dishes.

Sommelier Secret

Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc is the proud parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. That green bell pepper aroma that all three varieties share is no coincidence—it comes from a high concentration of pyrazines (an herbaceous aromatic compound) inherent to each member of the family.

YNG787729_2010 Item# 112489

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