Oak Valley Pinot Noir 2012

Just about on par.

Just about on par.

In a less than stellar showing at this year’s Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show, Pinot Noir collected no gold medals, a single silver (Paul Cluver 2012) and seven bronze, Véronique Drouhin-Boss, top Burgundian winemaker and international judge declaring that too many of the wines were “herbaceous and a bit bitter” going on to speculate that fruit was being overridden by oak.

I recently tasted four examples from the 2012 vintage which had accumulated and I’m afraid I didn’t have much joy, either.

Oak Valley 2012
Price: R200
Nine months in barrel, 35% new. Black cherry, some musky perfume, vanilla and char. Decent fruit weight and nice freshness but oak ultimately detracts.

Score: 88/100.

Creation 2012
Sold out (2013 sells for R182 a bottle).
12 months in barrel, 25% new.  Very primary with notes of red fruit and spice on the nose. Medium bodied with good freshness and prickly tannins. Modern styling – clean and pure but lacks detail.

Score: 87/100.

Lomond 2012
Price: R115
12 months in barrel, none new. Red cherry and some light spice. Fruit forward and light bodied, entirely straightforward.

Score: 84/100.

Glen Carlou 2012
Price: R145
10 months in barrel, 25% new. Black cherry plus vague notes of musk and earth. Very ripe, soft and sweet – lacks concentration and structure.

Score: 82/100.

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