Nerello Mascalese, Paolini
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Grape VarietyPinot Noir
StyleRipe & Juicy
RegionWaipara, North Canterbury
The vines, many of which are 25 years old and on their own roots, grow on a series of north facing, gradually descending terraces. While the site is warm during the day it is cool at night, which allows the fruit to ripen fully whilst retaining its good, natural acid levels. The drainage is helped by stones intermingled with the soil.
Prima Donna is made in only special years and 2010 was definitely one of these. After maturing for 18 months Pegasus select the barriques which best reflect their vineyard and the season. Typically these come from the oldest vines. The wine is then carefully blended according to taste to produce Prima Donna.
On release the wine is a deep crimson shot with lingering hints of purple. It is redolent with suggestions of ripe red-berry fruits, wild cherries and blueberries. These intertwine with whiffs of barbequed meats, grilled mushrooms, wood-smoke, dark chocolate and vanilla pods. Although the entry is soft it seems to rapidly expand in the mouth to become rich, powerful and muscular. In spite of this it retains refinement and poise with a long robe of velvety tannins, which flow through the palate and help draw out its lingering, spicy, tangy after-taste.
2012 92/100 points Lisa Perotti-Brown The Wine Advocate
2011 92/100 points Lisa Perotti-Brown The Wine Advocate
2011 95/100 points Bob Campbell MW www.bobswinereviews.com
2011 93/100 points Stephen Tanzer
2010 93/100 points Jamie Goode www.wineanorak.com
2010 Top 20 Kiwi Pinots Bob Campbell MW Decanter Magazine
2010 94/100 points James Suckling
2010 93+/100 points Wine Advocate