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NZ Organic Wine Awards ‘Winery of the Year 2017’: Black Estate
“Black Estate’s wines have caused more discussion amongst our judges than any other wines, leading to rather late nights on more than one occasion. Their wines are all sophisticatedly exclusive, from their four varietal Rose blend to their three unique Pinot Noir’s. Each wine they produce adds complexity and depth beyond what you expect, when you think you have a complete understanding of the wine another layer unfolds and adds to the intrigue. Black Estate achieved more Gold and Silver medals than any other vineyard partaking in the 2017 awards.”

Black Estate have certainly established themselves as one of the stars of Waipara recently. This comes as no surprise to those of us who have witnessed the team quietly working over the past few years to develop their three vineyards into some of the most delightful in New Zealand. Absolute passion for their land and dedication to their vines is behind every action taken by Nicholas, Penelope and the team. We’re impressed more and more by every release, and are very happy to be able to offer these wines to the Australian market.

Black Estate ‘Circuit’ Pinot Gris 2017
17.7/20, Andrew Graham, Australian Wine Review -“The Circuit range uses grower fruit and priced slightly lower than the Estate range. Some barrel ferment used here, helping to craft what is a succulent, gently textured style. There’s a great balance here between soft acidity and gentle richness – it’s restrained, faintly juicy, but never falls into flab or excess sweetness. It’s just a fraction tight for immediate satisfaction (give it 3-6 in bottle), but still an archetype of how to craft rich-but-refreshing Pinot Gris. Best drinking: 2017-2019. Would I buy it? In a heartbeat.”

Black Estate ‘Home’ Pinot Noir 2015
2015 was a high quality, low yielding vintage. Plenty of red and black fruits and light spice. The wine is nicely integrated and as Nicholas described the tannins are ‘melting’ into the wine. Supple texture with plenty of power but good elegance with 12.5% alcohol - just goes to show you don’t need over-ripeness to get the flavour and texture right.

5 stars, Sam Kim, Wine Orbit -“From their Home Vineyard (est. 1994), this sturdy pinot offers lifted aromas of dark fruit, mature game, clove and black tea on the nose. The palate is concentrated and impressively weighted, and delivers superb fruit power and rich texture, firmly structured by fine, drying tannins. A seriously structured wine for pinot enthusiasts. Organic and biodynamic farming practices have been used since 2010. At its best: now to 2022.”

Black Estate ‘Damsteep’ Pinot Noir 2015
The Damsteep Vineyard is located in the north east of Waipara Valley at the foot of the Omihi Saddle in North Canterbury. This Pinot Noir is grown on a 5.5 hectare vineyard with 9 different parcels of various north east, north, and north west facing slopes, with an altitude between 140 to 180 meters above sea level. The vines here were planted in 1999 and grow on clay overlying fractured limestone and sandstone soils. Organic and biodynamic farming practices have been used since 2012. The Damsteep Vineyard will be fully certified organic with BioGro in March 2017.

94 points, Jamie Goode, -“Beautifully focused with pure, silky, fresh cherry fruit and fine spiciness. Real elegance here with nice grainy structure.”