A much more favourable season than 2011 though not without several interesting periods. Spring conditions were great for budburst and early season growth. With small bunches from the previous season’s cool and wet summer and a wet spell during flowering we saw moderate to low yields with highly concentrated flavours. An average budburst-harvest interval but our longest ever veraison-harvest interval (74 days v 57 day average) resulting in intensified flavour and colour development. Second longest difference between harvest in the lower north and the higher south (31 days v 17 day average).
Main Ridge Pinot Noir dates...
Budburst - 31 Aug [avg 7 Sep]
Flowering – 12 Nov [avg 21 Nov]
Veraison - 16 Jan [avg 3 Feb]
Harvest – 26 Mar [avg 31 Mar]
Budburst-harvest - 208 [avg 207 days]
DORMANT INTERVAL [May-Aug]: Temperatures around average; rainfall below average (246mm v 280mm average).
BUDBURST INTERVAL [Sep-Nov]: Some disease pressure from above average rainfall (246mm v 181mm average including a very wet November, our wettest ever, 109mm, with several heavy falls, notably 38mm on 27th). Very warm, our equal warmest average maximum (19.6°C) and our 3rd warmest average minimum (9.7°C).
FLORAISON INTERVAL [Dec-Jan]: Rainfall was about average (84mm v 91mm average) as was maximum temperature (23.8°C v 23.7°C average), however, minimum temperatures were our equal warmest with vintage 2008 (14.0°C v 12.8°C average).
VERAISON INTERVAL [Feb-Apr]: Our longest veraison interval (74 days v 57 day average); February was warm with both minimums and maximums above average but March minimums were very low (21.8°C v 23.1°C average); April was close to average. February rainfall was well above average (73mm v 45mm) but this was largely due to the very heavy falls on one day, 41mm on the 28th; similarly March was above average (78mm v 41mm) with falls of 21mm on the 4th and 19mm on the 24th; April was slightly below average.
Budburst second earliest ever, a week earlier than average; flowering 9 days earlier than average and veraison our earliest ever, 19 days earlier than average; harvest was 8 days earlier than average, our 5th earliest vintage. Hang time was average.
Second longest difference between "up the hill" and "down the hill" - 31 days compared with an average of 17 days.
Langton’s rate it 9 for Chardonnay, 9 for Pinot Noir/Halliday 9 for Chardonnay, 9 for Pinot Noir.