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Kurtatsch Mazon Pinot Noir Riserva 2016 | Alto Adige DOC

Kurtatsch Mazon Pinot Noir Riserva 2016 | Alto Adige DOC


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Geographical Indication







Still Dry Red Wine

With fresh flavours of wild strawberry, mint, and forest floor, this wine instantly transports you to the Alpine woodlands of Alto Adige

As seen in The Independent: “…This is as fresh as an Alpine stream, but gets added complexity from cave ageing in oak barrels. With gorgeous aromas of spices such as cinnamon and earthy fungal notes, hints of mint, a light to medium bodied mouthfeel, and cherry, raspberry and strawberry flavours this feels lively on the palate. ” – Terry Kirby, The Independent

This Pinot Noir Riserva comes from high-altitude vineyards in the Dolomite Alps, located in the northern Italian region of Alto Adige. It’s packed with vigorous, fresh flavours of wild strawberry and mint, underpinned by notes of dried raspberry, mushroom and forest floor.

Mazon is the name of the vineyard that sits 350-450 metres above sea level on the eastern side of the Alto Adige glen. It only receives mild evening sun and, even on the hottest summer days, it’s cooled by the afternoon breeze from Lake Garda. This cooling effect helps the grapes to retain their natural acidity and develop the freshness and elegance found in the best examples of Pinot Noir.

Winemaking: After the harvest, grapes undergo cool maceration at 12°C for five days. This kicks off spontaneous fermentation by natural yeasts, which takes place for up to four weeks in wooden vats. The wine remains in contact with its skins throughout this period, picking up a rich colour and lots of strawberry flavour. Just under one-third (30%) of the wine is matured in new 225 litre French oak barriques, and 70% is placed in large second-use oak barrels. The new oak lends complex flavours and texture to the blend, but is limited to 30% so that it doesn’t overpower the fresh and fruity taste.

Tasting notes: Medium ruby colour with the first hints of garnet at the rim. Pronounced aromas of wild strawberry, blackberry, mint, walnuts, cinnamon rolls and cedar wood, with developing notes of forest floor and dried strawberries. In the mouth, the wine has zesty acidity, agile tannins, a high level of alcohol and a medium body. Each sip tastes like fresh wild strawberries, mint and cinnamon, leading to a long finish.

Wine Geek’s verdict: The secret sauce of this wine is that it’s literally matured in a big cave blasted into the side of a dolomite mountain (pictured). This lends a unique mineral character to the air inside. I visited in August 2020, and it’s the one and only aging cellar of its kind; possibly in the whole world. Kurtatsch do a magical job: this 2016 wine (four years old at the time of writing) tastes like freshly squeezed strawberry juice, with the added complexity of flavours from ageing.

Rankings and awards: James Suckling – 93 points (2016 vintage) | Gambero Rosso – Two Glasses (2016 vintage) | Mundus Vini, 2020 Spring Tasting – Gold Medal

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