Pinot Noir, New South Wales
Pinot Noir performs well on the deepish limestone based subsoils that are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or. However, yields need to be kept in check. Pinot Noir's concentration and varietal characters disappear rapidly if yields are excessive. Some of the best and most expensive wines in the world are still found in Burgundy.
Pinot Noir also plays a key role in Champagne, being blended with Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier. In the US, Oregon and Washington state are producing outstanding wines. In New Zealand, great Pinot Noirs are crafted in Martinborough and in Central Otago, New Zealand's only true continental climate.
The thin skins of Pinot Noir mean the wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However, the best wines have grippy tannins, fragrance and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, but as it matures, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouthfeel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey nuances emerging.
Home to 14 official wine regions, New South Wales offers a diverse and wide ranging expanse to produce wines that appeal to every palate.
From Australia's oldest continuous wine region – the famous Hunter Valley – to exciting new cool climate regions such as Orange, the Southern Highlands and Tumbarumba, these regions can be found to produce some of the best Australia Wine around. Recognised as the second largest wine producing state in Australia, New South Wales is also the most populous state with its wine consumption far outpacing the region's wine production. Although the Hunter Valley region is well known, the majority of wineries are located along the Murray and Darling Rivers (in the south-east of the state) which supplies water for many of the regions wineries.
Other regions within New South Wales includes the Canberra District, Cowra, Hastings River, Hilltops, Mudgee, New England, Perricoota, Riverina and the Shoalhaven Coast.
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