2020 By Farr Pinot Noir ‘Tout Près’ - Bannockburn Victoria
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Tout Pres, the flagship of the By Farr range and possibly one of the closest approximations to Burgundy made in Australia. It's not Burgundy but it comes close.
A true iron fist velvet glove type wine. To look at in the glass you would underestimate the sheer intensity and richness contained within.
100% wholebunch adds a different dimension to this wine, tannins are prominent but work to balance the dark brooding flavours and heady perfumes. Spicy fruit notes combine with hints of minerality. The flavours of plum, raspberry and cherry are seriously delicate but stacked in layers they exhibit so much intensity. I want to say this wine is ethereal, but I can't. But it is bloody amazing.
Tout Pres was planted in 2001 and is a very special and intriguing site. It rises above the other vineyards, and each of the three slopes consists of a different soil type. The largest slope is black volcanic soil over limestone; the second is quartz gravel mixed with red ironstone; the third is an iron strand in grey sandy loam. The clones, which will acclimatise and mutate over time to become the ‘Tout Pres clone’, are 113, 114, 115, 667, 777 and MV6.
With 7300 vines per ha, Tout Pres is a densely planted vineyard on the estate—hence its name, which translates as “very cosy”. This land is a challenge to farm, but well worth the effort. The soils and close competition force the vines to work hard, with the result being fruit that is lush but masculine, and which provides the coveted structure found only in the most age-worthy wines.
TASTING NOTE - ‘With every year that passes, the Tout Pres vineyard’s subtleness and delicate fruit structure are becoming increasingly pronounced in the wine. The bouquet fills the glass with spicy fruit, mineral elements and a hint of integrated French oak, with the darkness and essence of the Moorabool Valley true expressions of site. Classic whole bunch on the nose, spice and heady ripe fruit notes intermingle. A more expressive, single minded wine that will shape shift in the cellar almost as much as it does on your palate. Ripe fruit notes, layered between sweet spice, cardamom, dill, sour cherry, graphite and pepper. The most structured of the trio, the most engaging and arguably polarising. The Tout Pres feels wild with a mouth-watering savouriness and endless complexity.’ Nick Farr