Clos Henri Vineyards 2020 Petit Clos Pinot Noir, Wairau Valley, Marlborough, New Zealand
Nestled in the southern foothills of Marlborough’s Wairau Valley in New Zealand, Clos Henri is an organic wine estate established and meticulously run by the internationally-renowned Sancerre winemaking family of Henri Bourgeois. Eager to discover unique terroir and new winemaking perspectives, the Bourgeois family embarked on a 12-year worldwide search for land similar to their property in Sancerre, known for its premium Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. In 2000, the family discovered these new horizons and purchased 98 ha of pasture land in New Zealand’s most famous wine region.
Winemaker: Damien Yvon
Variety: Pinot Noir
Terroir: Stemming from Clos Henri's French heritage, high density plantings in the vineyard have been incorporated to encourage competition between vines and restrain vigor. This natural vigor control means that the vines put more energy into the grapes, rather than the canopy, concentrating on the berries. The younger Pinot vines on the estate are situated on 3 different soil types: Greywacke river stone, Broadbridge & Wither clays.
Vinification: All the Pinot Noir is hand-picked in the cool, early mornings to retain fruit integrity. This wine was fermented in stainless steel open tops and then aged in large (7,500 l) French oak vats for 11 months.
Ageing: Large oak vats instead of smaller barrels, gives the wine great balance with subtle oak which enriches structure while retaining aromatic intensity.
Scores: 92 Points. Pure strawberry and black-cherry aromas with slate and spice undertones. Full-bodied with firm, chewy tannins and a tar, black-pepper and spice undertone to the cool dark fruit. But it turns a little jammy at the end. From organically grown grapes. Drink or hold. Screw cap. - October, 2021, James Suckling