Rockburn Eleven Barrels; the name says it all really. Every year we fill hundreds of French oak barrels with Pinot Noir, and every year I search for those individual barrels that most eloquently speak of site and season. We present the results of that search to you here with a wine that exhibits the attributes I enjoy most about Pinot Noir; subtlety, elegance and personality
The 2022 Eleven Barrels Parkburn Vineyard Pinot Noir is a single vineyard wine displaying the power, generosity and intensity generated by our Parkburn Vineyard site. Dark and moody, the Eleven Barrels displays notes of black cherry, thyme and ripe plum, with an expressive nose and plush tannins on the palate. With the fine balance of ripe fruit, natural acidity and mineral tension this wine truly represents the Pisa sub-region and its complex nature. Expect to see this youthful wine transform and evolve over a decade or more; please be aware a fine deposit may occur as a result of our minimal handling philosophy.
19/20 (95 pts) - Candice Chow for Raymond Chan Wine Reviews - "Bright, light ruby-red, even colour throughout. This has a gentle, complex bouquet with dark cherry, plum, thyme, sweet spice and toasty oak. Medium-full bodied, dark cherry and plum aromas melded with thyme, cinnamon, nutmeg, unfolding milk chocolate and a hint of caramel. The fruit has a lovely ripeness in the dark-toned spectrum and elegant acidity. The mouthfeel is refined; silky tannins reflect integrated oak and linger with alluring toasty elements. This enticing Pinot Noir possesses black fruit; integrated oak elevates a toasty and silky palate and lends a satisfying, lingreing finish. Match with roasted lamb and duck over the next 10 years. Fruit from ParkburnVineyard, clone Able, fermented in 7-tonne fermenter, 8 days cold soaked, fermented over one week to 13.5% alc, 10 days post-fermentation maceration, aged 14 months in French oak, 27% new oak".
94 / 100 - David Walker Bell, Wine Folio - "A deep ruby colour in the glass, with a signature Central Otago perfume of damson, rosehip, cherry, musky asian spice, pepper and thyme. The palate is compelling, laced with that fleshy fruit and bolstered by granular, pliant tannin. A confident acidity sets the tone for a wine that could be moody and dark, but is driven by a generosity and plushness that emerges as an exotic headiness. The oak, minerality and savoury elements of bracken and peat are neatly tucked-in towards the long, harmonic finish".
17.5/20 -Joelle Thomson -"Full bodied Pinot Noir from cool climates is always a treat and this deep, earthy and structured Pinot Noir from Central Otago expresses ripe cherry and plum notes from a warmer area within what can be a rather chilly region. The highly revered Pinot Noir clone known as Abel makes up 100% of this wine and it is grown on free draining glacial soils at Parkburn, Pisa and Cromwell, which clearly suit its complex layers of ripe flavour. Winemaker Malcolm Rees-Francis gives the grapes eight days of skin contact at cool temperatures followed by fermentation with a week of plunging to extract depth of colour, structure and tannins. The wine spent 14 months in French oak, 27% new, a relatively modest amount of time that flatters the wine".
4.5 Stars - Yvonne Lorkin -"What happens when winemaker Malcolm Rees-Francis gets hold of amazing quality, Abel clone, Parkburn-grown fruit and throws it into a 7tonne fermenter for an eight-day cold soak, followed by a week-long ferment with daily hand plunging then a 10-day post-ferment soak before being aged for 14 months in 27% new French oak? You get this exotically-spiced, soothing, rhubarb and cream-laced lovely with soft, suede-like tannins and a seam of wildfires creeping through wild thyme. Serve in the largest, most swirlable glass you can find."