2007 Vavasour Pinot Noir

Awatere Valley, Marlborough, New Zealand; 14% ABV
$7 at the Richmond, CA, store on 4 Apr

2007_Vavasour_PNAfter the 2008 Vavasour Sauvignon Blanc was so good, I jumped on this bottle, and the wine completely justified my impulse.

Not that I have a huge sample size, but this wine is the darkest and richest New Zealand Pinot Noir I have tasted.  It needed about 1.5 hours of air, but then showed flavors of very dark cherry / kirsch, plum, cola, Pinot funk, and dark aromatic spice / black earth.  It’s more fruity and not as dry-earthy, but it reminded me of some nice Burgundies I’ve tasted.  Although I usually prefer the light and airy style of Pinot Noir, I found this wine spectacularly delicious for the price.  I expect it will go very quickly during the sale, and maybe before.

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15 thoughts on “2007 Vavasour Pinot Noir

  1. BargainWhine Post author

    I opened a bottle of this a few days ago and drank the second half (stoppered in a 375ml bottle with very little air) last night. The first half I thought had complex, dark plum / kirsch flavors much as originally reviewed, but was rather acid. The second half still needed an hour or two of air to show more delicate and aromatic redder fruits with nice Pinot funk. It was never totally in balance or wonderful, but my conclusion is that it should age for another year or two before I try another bottle.

    Reply
    1. 5-Star Bar

      I bought a bottle of the 2007 Vavasour Pinot Noir earlier this year and opened it a couple of months ago. In short, I loved it and I wish that I had bought more! Quite elegant with Rose Petal, Mushroom, and tea-like tannins I thought it a fine example of New Zealand Pinot from the Awatere Valley in Marlborough.

      Reply
      1. 5-Star Bar

        Think I should add kirsch (cherry eau-de-vie) and cola to my list of descriptors as well. If you have this in your cellar consider yourself fortunate.

        Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      The IO 2004 red blend was selling like mad at the Richmond store on Wednesday. I got a bottle that I might get to tonight.

      Reply
  2. dluber

    I’m voting for bottle variation; I opened one a few days ago and a friend and I both quite liked it, although not as well as BW – but his review was on the mark, darker fruit, identifiable pinot character, quite drinkable but with a resounding ripe acidity that indicated it might age further – tiny tinge of white-part-of the citrus peel bitterness that you sometimes see in pinot, sauvignon blanc, and gewurz, which typically ages out (presumably caused by naringin). Opened another bottle tonite, and all three at the table agreed it had a sharp metallic aftertaste that kind of ruined it. Maybe variable levels of the same compound…

    Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      Wow! Thanks very much for the information. I don’t recall anything like that in my bottle. While I’m glad to hear Peter is not off his rocker, or I suppose might not be :), I’m distressed to hear there’s such variation in bottles. Were these bottles purchased at the same time from the same lot?

      Reply
  3. Peter

    i bought a bottle of the vavasour as i was excited by the review. i tasted it right out of the bottle and it was rough. after the recommended 1.5 hour I tasted it again. It had come together somewhat but there was a really really strong and persistent bitter chemical aftertaste at the back of my throat – yuck! beyond that this bottle had no complexity whatever. It is rare that I dump a wine down the drain, but after a few more attempts – hoping it might improve – that’s what i did.

    Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      Hi Peter. I’m sorry to hear you so strongly disliked this wine. While it’s possible there was some bottle variation, I suspect we just have very different tastes. Would you please tell me some GO wines you liked?

      Reply
  4. BargainWhine Post author

    When I opened this bottle, I poured out half into a 375ml bottle and stoppered it with very little air. I opened that second half tonight, and the wine, while showing more red cherry than the first half, is still very nice. I may cellar some for a few years.

    Reply
    1. EricfromRichmond

      There was some at the Richmond store today, though it looks like it’s moving quickly. There were quite a few new wines today including a Sawkar Family red blend, a couple of new Riojas. The store manager said that there would be another IO Red Blend (2004 I think). I’m also remembering a couple of Alexander Valley Cabs (one is Mosaic 2010) and I’m pretty sure there was more, but I can’t remember particulars.

      Reply
      1. Seedboy

        The 2004 IO red blend was sold at Oakland about 3 years ago. I bought a case and recently tried one. It is a little lighter in body than the 05. It is not significantly more evolved, though; I think both of these wines have years left. Sounds like I’m going to need to go shopping today.

        Reply
    2. BargainWhine Post author

      Besides the bottle I got from the Richmond store, I saw it at the Oakland store yesterday (Sunday).

      Reply

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