2020 Dr McMahon Pinot Noir

2020 Dr McMahon Pinot Noir

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Reviews:           97 points Halliday Wine Companion    

                          93 points The Real Review

Winemakers Comments:

2020 was a mild season with average rainfalls for most months, pushing our harvest dates into the second week of March.

After a dry start to winter we received good rain fall over late June and July, achieving soil saturation and a positive start to the growing season. Average rainfall continued through to Spring with cooler than average temperatures though August and September. Luckily, October brought warmer than average temperatures with two record high days on the 24th and 31st with dryer conditions overall. Unfortunately, strong winds during this time affected flowering in the vineyard and thus the yields. The warm weather continued into Summer with November being the hottest month on record. Growth in the vineyard was exceptional and produced lush canopies, protecting the fruit. Mid to late Summer however was generally mild with January and February receiving higher than average rainfall.

The mild summer delayed vintage by 2 weeks irrespective of the low yields. In some blocks the small crops were the reason we were able to ripen the fruit, with picking dates went into the second week of April.

Overall, a challenging season to manage, irrespectively of the other issues of bushfires and lockdowns the country was dealing with. Even with the low yield (some blocks down 60%) we are extremely fortunate to have great (clean) wines from 2020 and are saddened by so many that weren’t as fortunate.          

Harvest date: 18/03/2020

Baume: 12.0 bè

pH: 3.35

TA: 5.3

Soil: deep red volcanic / basalt

Elevation: 220m

Aspect: East

Clone: Unknown

Yields tons/acres: 1.8


Fruit was handpicked early morning into small buckets (with bunch selection done in the vineyard). The cool fruit is brought into the winery where it is placed directly into two new 500L barrels (no de-stemming – 100% whole bunch). The fruit is then left for around 55 days on skins during which wild fermentation and wild malolactic fermentation take place. The wine and must is then drained out and pressed directly back to one of the 500L barrels. The wine is then matured for 10-12 months, then bottled using no fining or filtration. This wine is 100% whole bunch, 100% wild ferment, 100% wild MLF, 100% barrel fermented using 100% new oak.    

Winemaking Notes:     

Due to the tiny yields in 2020 the Old Vine Reserve Pinot Noir wasn’t made, instead the old vine fruit went into our first Dr McMahon Pinot Noir! We are thrilled to be introducing this wine in the 50th year of Seville Estate and one decade after the first Dr McMahon Shiraz. The wine is immensely complex and layered, arguably up there with 2017. A wine you can drink now but will be better with some patience, if you can wait… Drink 2025 – 2035.

Wine Analysis:

Production: 55 dozen

Alcohol: 13.3%            

Ph: 3.70                

Acidity: 5.9 g/L