Evaluation of early vintages of Pinot Gris, Riesling & 2007 Pinot Noir.
by Misha, March 2022.
This is a question we’re often asked and it’s hard to answer as it really depends on the level of maturity one enjoys in a particular wine style.
Olly Masters, our winemaker, who’s about to embark on his 16th vintage with Misha’s Vineyard, has always crafted our wines as ‘fine wines’ which is a very general description in some respects, but does denote our intent to produce the highest quality of wine that’s possible. Producing fine wines requires not only the highest level of winemaking standards but it’s also inextricably linked to the highest quality viticultural standards.
Even before the ground-breaking of Misha’s Vineyard, the motto of our company was ‘No Compromise’ and that still holds true today with our desire to craft wines that are an authentic expression of our unique site and of a quality level that will enable them to age gracefully. With that in mind, along with Olly’s desire for a minimal winemaking regime, he uses a lot of natural fermentation, or wild fermentation, which is carried out in old French oak barrels. People are surprised that we use a portion of wild fermentation across almost all of our white wines, and of course, for all of our Pinot Noirs.
With our Pinot Gris, Olly always says his style is a ‘nod to Alsace’ – a region where Pinot Gris is a noble variety and where the wines are amongst the best and most age-worthy in the world. As per the style in Alsace with wild fermentation, Olly wild ferments 30-40% of our Pinot Gris to produce a more textural and age-worthy wine. With our Rieslings, both our medium-dry Limelight Riesling and the dry Lyric Riesling, he also uses wild fermentation for 10-20% of the wine.
From time to time, we sit down and review some of our earlier vintages to see how they are ageing. Recently Olly and the team reviewed nine wines from some of our earliest vintages of Lyric Riesling which is our dry style, some early vintages of Pinot Gris and our first vintage of Pinot Noir – ‘The Audition’ – from our trial 2007 vintage.
Click our cellaring guide HERE for his evaluation of:
• Dress Circle Pinot Gris 2015 – 2011
• Lyric Riesling 2012 – 2010
• First Vintage of Pinot Noir – 2007