I recommended this at the end of last month; I was right.
Pinot Noir by Farr 2004, Gary Farr
A lovely nose of bright red fruit and, if you can believe it from an Australian wine, it is really earthy. You can tell he largely ferments with whole clusters, too; you can smell the stems. There is some real complexity about the nose of this wine, which is really good as it cost nineteen quid. The best compliment I can give this wine is that it smells a bit like Domaine Dujac from a ripe, charming vintage. But even though it is ripe this is no bruiser, it is a perfectly balanced 13.5% and there is not a hint of jamminess to the fruit. The palate has plenty of fresh red fruit, good acidity and a slightly prickly tannic structure. This tastes a bit like Burgundy that it going through its awkward, middle-aged stage. But it is quite delicious and easy to enjoy, reasonably complex too. I think this wine will last until it is ten and, dare I say it, improve along the way. This is a top bottle for the price and I would be very interested in trying the By Farr prestige cuvee Pinot Noir known as Sangreal. Pleasingly that is not that much more expensive than this; Gary Farr makes damned-good wines and you have to be gladdened that he doesn’t charge the Earth for them.
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Just to note, the partner says this is very New World. He is wrong. There is plenty of fruit, sure, but there is more than that. There is earthiness, stemminess and a notable degree of complexity. This is a bottle of proper Pinot and I should not be surprised it comes from Australia because I am well aware that Gary Farr is a talented, experienced winemaker who doesn’t arse around letting his grapes stew in the heat then bleach any remaining character out of them in the winery.