Released with bottle aged complexity, this is renowned as among the very finest Pinot Noir of the Antipodes. Sourced from a single plot defined as the most limestone-embedded section of the Estate. Hand-picked and foot-trodden. The fruit expresses itself as a luxe velour of bing cherry, poached strawberry and kirsch. Beneath, a carriage of firm, granular tannins meld with a laser beam of mineral force, towing the fray long. Exceptional and not to be missed.
TA 4.7 g/l. Pale red. Nervy and refined – quite a thoroughbred. At the moment just a hint of oak influence but this would make a great bottle eventually.
18 points, JancisRobinson.com (September 2014)
A particular limestone-inflected single plot, handpicked and foot-trodden. This is a joy! The first whiff alone makes me giddy with anticipation. Can’t ask for too much more from a wine, really! Turbid, with the autumnal aroma and hue of age: forest floor and glorious decay. Orange zest, rhubarb, dried cherry, Chinese tea and sandalwood to woodsmoke scents, too. The tannins, fully resolved. Doing their job as guardian of this sensual wine’s many complexities. Fresh, sapid and long.
95+ points (August 2020)
Sleek, dense and savoury pinot noir that's showing plenty of bottle development and, my sample at least, may be approaching its peak. Plum, berry, old leather, oak and beef tea flavours. A little alcohol heat is evident on the finish. A smooth-textured wine with peppery tannins on the finish.
93 points, The Real Review (July 2019)
The 2010 Gradient Pinot Noir was made using 40% whole bunches. Pale to medium ruby colored, it offers a stemmy nose with dried herb notes over scents of kirsch, cranberry preserves and dried leaves plus a whiff of rose hip tea. Medium-bodied with chewy, astringent tannins and lovely red fruits, it has a long earthy finish. One for the whole-bunch Pinot geeks.
92 points, Wine Advocate (January 2015)
<p>Koyama Mountford was planted in 1991 on an enviable calcareous scree embedded in the northwestern face of the eastern Waipara Valley. A substrata of marl brimming with plentiful active limestone, it is known as ‘The Golden Mile’. This is the soil type on which Chardonnay and Pinot Noir excel. A geological foundation seldom found in the antipodes, limestone imparts a structural carapace while infusing the Mountford wines with a signature mineral force. Be it the resinous expressions of Chardonnay, or densely layered Pinot Noir, an apogee of complexity reached with the single vineyard expressions, the Mountford wines have long struck a chord with even the most devout Burgundy lovers.</p>
<p>Success is due as much to a propitious confluence of site and meticulous attention to detail, as it is to a savvy succession plan.</p>
<p>Crafted by CP Lin since inception, a maker well versed in the magic of Burgundy, the cultish renown of the Mountford style continues to evince authority while exhibiting an even more refined cut-glass precision, since his retirement.</p>
<p>It was then only fitting that the head winemaker role be bequeathed to his assistant, Takahiro Koyama. Koyama sought investment from top wine collectors in the world’s most venerable and demanding market for Burgundy. Where else, but for Japan! These collectors were as smitten by the Mountford track record as the world’s top buyers and critics remain spell-bound.</p>
<p>In 2017 Koyama purchased the estate to complement his eponymous label. Today both Koyama and Koyama Mountford benefit from this superlative site, Koyama’s winemaking nous, a dedicated posse of well versed backers and unparalleled Japanese precision.</p>