What’s in the glass tonight

Forrest 100 Virgins Pinot Noir 2011

From the Cellar: Forrest Estate 100 Virgins Graperide Pinot Noir Marlborough 2011 – Free

Dr Forrest of Forrest Estate Wines is a fine host of the Graperide cycle event, and his team really knows how to pull off a well-run and safe bike race.

He is also generous: every year that riders re-enter the race, at Registration they are given a complimentary bottle of the previous vintage of Forrest Estate Pinot Noir for simply coming back to have another go.

I think I have completed the event for 6 years in a row. Thusly, I have built up a bit of a vertical of their pinots down in the Pool Room. I have also been known to knock the top off a bottle the evening before the ride, and have learnt a wee bit about their products.  I believe that Forrest Estate do not possess the requisite terroir to make a great Pinot Noir – they are good winemakers and make a fine Riesling – but it is appropriate to consider their pinot as more of a drink-now wine. But I am interested to see if a moderate bit of age improves the wine.

Ruby. 13%.

A typical Pinot nose – red cherries, underbrush. Ethereal, even.

Less nuance in the mouth, unweighted, and light-bodied. An assertive attack with not much extract and the wine thins out as it sits in the glass over time. Adds also a touch of dry stainless steel metallic note. Which sounds bad but is actually OK if I drink it fast enough!

Lesson: the little extra age actually helps.

G 3

Straight to the Pool Room – April 2015

Pool Room April 2015

From our recent trip to Marlborough cellar doors:

Cloudy Bay Te Koko Sauvignon Blanc 2011 – $$$ – drink 2015 – 2017. This is practically the only Sav L likes.

Villa Maria Reserve Malbec Gimblett Gravels Hawkes Bay 2009 – $$$ – drink 2019 – 2029. Tasted dense and impressive at the Cellar Door. Had to get one.

Villa Maria Reserve Noble Semillon 2011 – $$$ – drink 2021 – 2026. L likes a good sticky.

Forrest Estate Graperide Pinot Noir 2014 – free – drink 2017 – 2018. Cook With or Hold.

Straight to the Pool Room – Graperide Special


All Graperide entrants who competed the year before are given a free bottle of Forrest Marlborough Pinot Noir at Registration. This year it was the 10th anniversary of the fun ride, so the Good Doctors decided to Supersize the offer and give us all a Magnum of said vino.

I brought a bottle of 1993 Matua Cab Sav to drink at the Friday night pre-ride potluck dinner/carbo-load. It was absolute muck. To call it vinegar does disservice to real vinegars. So I was forced to open my magnum…

Fortunately L kept her magnum tightly sealed so into the Pool Room it goes…along with a standard 750ml bottle of same that L won for taking out top spot in her event!

Forrest Pinot Noir 2013 – drink 2016

Framingham Marlborough Old Vine Riesling 2013  – drink 2016-2018. Bought at the winery