Selected for the 2019 Fine Wines of New Zealand List
Doctors Flat Pinot Noir is about Steve Davies’ pursuit of wine true to its origin – wine of terroir. The vines are organically farmed with care and harvested by hand. Steve's dedication was recently acknowledged by having this wine included in the Air New Zealand Fine Wines of New Zealand list.
Steve Davies left his job as wine maker at Carrick and set about turning his small organically farmed Bannockburn vineyard into one of the regions best. This is the nine vintage and it is an absolute stunner. We've always loved the elegance and purity in Steve's wine. In 2015 the stars seemed to have aligned and the result is a Pinot Noir of elegance, charm, flavour length… already a bottle of absolute deliciousness.
Winery notes (2015 Vintage)
"Doctors Flat is an individual pursuit. Steve Davies' vines are planted in old soils on a singular site. He farms them without synthetic input, doing only what is needed to make wine that speaks for itself. The result is authentic, age-worthy and a pleasure to drink.
Aromatic nose with scents of raspberry, cherry and rose. Mouthfilling, rich and savoury, displaying good texture, excellent complexity and a noteworthy mid palate energy. Finishes with good fruit and fine grained tannin, approachable now.
Doctors Flat Vineyard is a single 3-hectare block in Bannockburn. The soil is old in the context of Otago vineyards, composed of deep gravels laid down by receding glaciers some 480,000 years ago. We now see that the advanced soil age contributes to the fine tannin and good texture of Doctors Flat Pinot Noir. The vineyard is farmed organically, primarily to support and improved the soil health. We know a healthy and abundant soil micro life is good for vine health. The micro life breaks down and transports nutrient and minerals to the vines and that connection between soil and vine contributes to the wine’s character and sense of place.
I use a simple programme of small open tanks, close attention, minimal inputs and a very light hand in the extraction process. In 2015 30% of the fruit went directly to tank as whole bunches. Fermentation occurred without added yeast. After 25 and 26 days on skins the wine was drained and pressed to French oak barrels (23% new). Malolactic conversion is delayed until spring and SO2 not added until mid summer. After a full 12 months in barrel the wine is racked to tank for a second winter. 18 months after harvest the wine was bottled without fining or filtration."
5 Stars Michael Cooper (2015 Vintage)
"The lovely 2015 vintage is a single-vineyard red, grown at Bannockburn, matured for a year in French oak barrels (23 per cent new), and bottled without fining or filtering. Notably refined and harmonious, it is fragrant, mouthfilling and savoury, with sweet-fruit delights, concentrated cherry, plum and spice flavours, showing real complexity, and a finely textured, lasting finish. Fully a match for many, far higher-priced Central Otago reds, it's already drinking well, but should be long-lived; best drinking 2020+."
5 Stars & 95/100 Bob Campbell MW, The Real Review, June 2018 (2015 Vintage)
"Delicately scented pinot noir with floral, red rose, dark cherry, plum, spice and thyme flavours. Supple and appealing wine with an ethereal texture. It’s deliciously drinkable now but should age gracefully. A classy pinot noir."
5 Stars & 95/100 Sam Kim, Wine Orbit, May 2018 (2015 Vintage)
"Exquisitely composed and styled, the engaging bouquet shows dark cherry, thyme, black olive and truffle characters with nuances of game and toasted almonds. The palate is concentrated and multi-layered, delivering gorgeous fruit purity combined with seductive savoury notes and sensual mouthfeel. From their single vineyard in the Bannockburn district, this is superbly long and gratifying on the finish. At its best: now to 2025."