Pyramid Valley Snake’s Tongue Pinot Noir 2021



Evocatively named after the dominant pasture plant found in the vineyard, Snake’s Tongue is a single vineyard of just over an acre of Abel clone Pinot Noir, grown from cuttings taken in the early 80s from the famed grand cru La Tâche in Vosne-Romanée.

The vineyard, nestled in the foothills of the Southern Alps in a secluded valley connected to the original course of the Mata-Au River by the Low Burn in Central Otago, consists of predominantly loess over deep silts that have developed pedogenic lime deposits. Meticulously farmed to the highest standard, the vines are in their third year of organic conversion for this 2021 vintage, producing stellar fruit.

Around three quarters of the grapes are destemmed with the rest left as whole bunches, and fermented using the natural yeasts from the vineyard and winery in an open top concrete tulip fermenter for 21 days. The wine is then aged in 500 litre oak puncheons, 25% new, for 12 months, then blended and aged for a further 6 months in oak prior to being bottled unfined and unfiltered.

Rich garnet in colour, with a complex, alluring nose of ripe plums and wild thyme, giving a depth and warmth to the aromas that envelop. Opening on the palate with flavours of ripe red fruits and savoury spices, the mouthfeel is plush and silky with a velvety texture that holds the intense fruit together. Complex but effortlessly elegant, this is a wine that speaks of a very special piece of land.

  • Savoury, complex, elegant
  • 750ml
  • 13% Alcohol
  • Screwcap
  • Drink by 2050
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Producer: Pyramid Valley

The wines of Pyramid Valley are born in the dramatic soils and slopes of the Waikari Estate in North Canterbury and the Manata Estate in Central Otago, south island New Zealand.

Mike and Claudia Weersing bought the very first plot in 2000 and spent 17 years establishing the vineyards using only biodynamic viticulture, gaining a world-wide reputation for the remarkable Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines produced. The estate was taken over in 2017 by good friends Steve Smith and Brian Sheth, Steve a wine superstar and renowned for establishing Craggy Range in Hawke’s Bay and Martinborough. The two added the Manata Estate in Lowburn, Central Otago, in 2018, an exceptional site for Pinot Noir.

The estates remain tended according to the holistic principles of biodynamics, working with the energy of the cosmos and feeding the soils and ecosystem of the site, being in tune with each of the vineyards and its unique needs based on individual soil type, site aspect, ecosystem and local climate. In the cellar, the winemaking follows natural principles with the use of indigenous yeasts, natural fining and minimal, if any, filtration. The ultimate goal at Pyramid Valley is to guide the vines from the earth to the bottle, producing wines that truly breathe of their place.

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