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Pyramid Valley Single Vineyard Waipara : 2020 Precision

Pyramid Valley Single Vineyard Waipara : 2020 Precision
Last year we promised you a set of single-vineyard Pyramid Valley wines drawn from some of the most respected old-vine vineyards in Waipara, and today we deliver. Through their releases to date, Steve Smith and Huw Kinch have already articulated that North Canterbury holds the best set of cards in the southern hemisphere’s deck in the face of global warming. “There’s a bristling nature to [North Canterbury’s] sunshine, an edge to it,” said Smith in an interview with Wine Enthusiast, “Because you’ve always got wind, even in the middle of the summer. And you see it in the wines. There’s a sense of energy and tension in them which I relate back to that feeling”
 
According to Smith, North Canterbury has always had the right conditions for world class Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. “We love the rawness and genuine coolness of North Canterbury; the slopes, the limestone and rocks, the mountain backdrop. And now more than ever, the passion of the local winemakers and growers (and vineyards now getting some age on them) push the boundaries.”
 
The Springs and Korimako vineyards are two such sites to which Smith alludes. The Springs vineyard is home to some of Waipara’s oldest (and own-rooted) Chardonnay vines. Sheltered by the Teviot hills, it’s a relatively warm site for Waipara and gifts wine of genuine, cool ripeness balanced by focussed, glassy acidity. They have a category for this kind of balance in Burgundy…
 
Not far to the west, in the direction of Weka Creek, the Omihi clay soils give way to Domett clay and then as you veer further north, into the Pahau clay loams. The vines now turn to face the bracing easterly winds head-on. Guy Porter planted his Pinot Noir vines on these frigid slopes above Mackenzies Road in 2004, and to this day it remains the dictionary definition of ‘cool climate’. These days, how many mature vineyards in the southern hemisphere can properly ripen Pinot Noir at 12.5%?  

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