The Airlie Bank 2015 Noir (a pinot noir) is a really interesting wine from Tim Shand and the team at Punt Road in the Yarra Valley. For those who spend time in the Yarra Valley, it is regrettably clear that phylloxera is on the march. This however presented an opportunity for the creation of this wine, because balanced pinot noir grapes were able to be sourced from an old block at the Napoleone vineyard (off St Huberts Road) that is now heavily infested with phylloxera. Perhaps sadly it may well be one of the last from this block. The plot thickens from here too. Quite unusually, the wine then saw the addition of some hot smoked bunches that were fermented in a demijohn. Risky, but I think it worked. And then there's even more with the strain of yeast used in the ferment, but I'll leave that to another day. What then of the wine? In the glass, 2015 Airlie Bank Noir is exuberant and really fresh. Plums, cherry, wet rosemary (50% whole bunch too) and some hints of smokiness. The palate is juicy and clean. Enjoyable drinking.
Vendors and website: http://puntroadwines.com.au