Friday, 21 March 2014

Murdoch James

Murdoch James Estate  Martinborough - visit March 8th 2014
Carl Fraser - Winemaker - the one on the left :)

Situated on the Dry River terraces on the outskirts of Martinborough are the vineyards and winery for Murdoch James Estate. A rather unique grape growing environment exists with soil conditions a mixture of calciferous lime, clay and river silts with a decent mineral content.

Vineyards and key staff at Murdoch James:

Many thousands of years ago the colliding together of the Australian tectonic plate against the Pacific plate gave rise to the hills and surrounds where Murdoch James Estate is now situated.

Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Vibrant and very expressive sweet gooseberry, golden Kiwi and light herb notes; on the palate equally fruity and very generous of flavor; medium+ acidity with an apple and light white floral side; a mineral note at front of palate adds texture, appeal and length.
3.5 Stars

Estate Pinot Gris 2013
Fruity and generous with plenty of fruit appeal - sweet red apple - a simple bouquet; on the palate much more to talk about - apple, lemon, lemon & mineral water flavors; medium acidity and just slightly creamy in texture; a charming example.. Balanced with medium length and light on complexity.
3 Stars 

Rose 2013 (Made in a Vin Gris Style with 100% 777 clone Pinot Noir)
With .75 grams RS there's no mistaking the style of this wine - the finish is pristine, dry and crunchy - medium+ acidity; lots of light red fruits mainly red melon and Martinborough strawberry. A great wine to serve as an aperitif. Chill well and serve in a very large Pinot Noir balloon.
3.5 Stars

Estate Pinot Noir 2012
Medium intensity with light red fruits of cherry and strawberry, moderate complexity if not a touch gentle in the overall bouquet. On the palate  - dry with medium+ red fruit flavors - more intense cherry and strawberry, I like the mineral aspect with a touch of light clay and limestone; light mealy textures, crisp and clean on the finish. Balanced with medium length and complexity. very nice!
4 Stars

The Blue Rock Range

Single Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012
There's that mineral undertone again - quite fine and gentle but also a very elegant bouquet; there's also plenty of oak woven into the bouquet as well as light red fruits of Strawberry and cherry; On the palate - dry with a strong fruit core; the 30% new oak influence is absorbed with ease by the fruit; moderate oak spices; fine yet forward tannins and medium+ acidity. Balanced with medium+ length and complexity.
A food wine for sure - simply because of the youth and forward nature of the various components.
4.5 Stars

Single Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011
Gently fruity and gentle on the nose and showing some development I would normally associate with a slightly older wine - that said the palate reveals quite a complex heart with subtle fruit flavors and textures; the tannins are still youthfully firm driven by the fruit before oak. Balanced with medium length and complexity.
3 Stars

Syrah 2011 Single Vineyard 12.5%
Light and gentle fruits with a Pinot Noir cherry like note and soft white pepper lift; moderate oak. On the palate the flavors of black berry, plum and cherry emerge with a texture that reminds me of a Southern Rhone Cornas, but with Martinborough mineral signature; dry with medium+ tannins carrying the white pepper and slightly broodier flavors. Balanced with medium length and complexity. There is a point of differnce here with its fine fruit and tannin flavors and textures.
4 Stars

Syrah 2012 Single Vineyard 14%
Now we're talking..... great varietal push  with gravels, sand, rock and minerals encased in soft red fruits with a red apple skin highlight; the blackberry and darker red cherry aromas follow; on the palate - dry with an edgyness that adds complexity; the darker fruit flavors emerge followed by the gravels and masculinity of a robust style; medium+ tannins - ripe yet youthful; medium+ length and complexity. A very particular expression with plenty of appeal and presence.
5 Stars

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