Different faces of Pinot Noir
We had some good friends over last night for dinner, two couples and another friend, all of whom we've known for 20 years. There's something rich about this sort of history.
Among the various wines we consumed, there was a nice pair of Pinot Noirs, one from Burgundy and one from New Zealand - interestingly, both similarly priced.
The first was Drouhin's Rully 2006 (c £14 Waitrose). It's pale in colour (remember, this is often a good thing with Pinot), and quite savoury with an earthy edge to the attractive cherry fruit. Delicious, but lacks perhaps a touch of elegance.
The second is Villa Maria's Reserve Pinot Noir 2006 Marlborough (£15.99 Tesco, Noel Young, Fresh & Wild, Hailsham Cellars, nzhouseofwine). It's deep coloured, with lovely sweet dark cherry fruit and some raspberry and blackcurrant richness. While this is quite a rich wine, it's pure and elegant, too.
Which did people prefer? Some liked the Burgundy best, but I marginally preferred the New Zealand Pinot, with its richness as well as elegance. A close call, though.