Social distancing measures were not going to stop the National Liquor News tasting panel from swishing and swirling their way through some of the finest Pinot Noir currently on the market.

And while the judging process looked a little different with our wonderful panel tasting a selection of Pinot Noir from the socially distant safety of their own homes, the high quality of Australian and New Zealand wines remains the same.

As you can see, our judges comments were overwhelmingly positive, and speak highly of the quality of wines being produced out of Australia and New Zealand.

“New world Pinot just continues to impress and improve year on year, move over Burgundy! This has been a top-notch bunch of delicious wines. Winemakers at the top of their game playing with such a delicate and fussy grape.”

– Andy Dean, Co-founder, The Tasting Glass

“The fruit is really talking over oak, which means some great noses in many of these wines. Some of the wines may still be a little young, but many of these will be amazing wines soon, so the future is very bright for Pinot Noir.”

– Andy Young, Editor, The Shout & Bars and Clubs

“Established regions were far and away indicative of Pinot Noir character and as is so often the case price was a good indicator of quality.”

– Andrew Stubbs, Manager, Vine Wine



2019 Brokenwood Pinot Noir (94 points)

Region: Beechworth

Distributed by: Samuel Smith & Son

“Lovely elegant red cherries underpinned with bacon fattiness. A wonderfully structured old world style with dark cherries and a core of beautiful sweetness before the structural grippy yet approachable tannin. Pinot is often described as an iron fist in a velvet glove and this is in that territory.” – Andrew Stubbs



2017 Brancott Estate Letter Series Pinot Noir (90 points)

Region: Marlborough

Distributed by: Pernod Ricard

“Smooth as velvet. Fine structured tannins. Red fruits with a hint of oak. Good long finish.” – Geoff Bollom



2019 Zilzie Regional Collection Pinot Noir (91 points)

Region: Adelaide Hills

Distributed by: Fesq and Company (VIC/NSW/QLD/ACT); Options Wine Merchants (SA/NT); Distinctive Wines & Spirits (WA); Swallow Liquor Merchants (TAS)

“Gently savoury but mouth-wateringly juicy at the same time. Full of raspberries and cherries with a soft spicy finish. Don’t stop me at just one glass of this.” – Andy Dean



2015 Giesen Limited Edition Organic Pinot Noir (96 points)

Region: Marlborough

Distributed by: Oatley Fine Wine Merchants

“Nutty, intense and complex nose. Leads to a sophisticated and silky palate of ripe cherries and stunning florals, with almost perfectly balanced acidity and tannins. Superb organic Pinot.” – Andy Dean



2019 Tamburlaine Point 65 Pinot Noir (93 points)

Region: Orange

Distributed by: Tamburlaine Organic Wines

“Smooth and silky, this slides around the mouth with ease, nothing too intense here but it works. Gently balances young strawberries and cranberries with some earthy spicy notes, and a pleasant finish (if a little short lived).” – Andy Dean



2018 Riorret Pinot Noir (89 points)

Region: Yarra Valley

Distributed by: De Bortoli

“Vibrant cherry, forest floor, olive tapenade aromas. A powerful pinot with good structure vibrant fruit with great length.” – Tom Czerski



2017 Poole’s Rock Premiere Pinot Noir (93 points)

Region: Adelaide Hills

Distributed by: Agnew Wines

“Bursting with cranberries in the palate. Super refreshing acidity balanced with some fine peppery spice and a hint of vanilla. Yum.” – Andy Dean



2017 Silkwood Estate The Walcott Pinot Noir (88 points)

Region: Pemberton

Distributed by: Single Vineyard Sellers

“Bang! Hits you straight away on the nose with red cherry and a tiny hint of mint. The palate is then intriguingly contradictory with a touch of mushroom. Take some time with this wine it will develop and reward you.” – Andy Young

Food Pairing:

  • “Rabbit or Guinea fowl – light red meats and game.” – Craig Hawtin-Butcher
  • “Salmon steaks (skin on of course) or Roast duck.” – Geoff Bollom
  • “For me, a slightly chilled Pinot Noir can almost beat a Gewurtz or Pinot Gris in a Thai restaurant. Cooling but also gently spicy at the same time, a fabulous match.” – Andy Dean
  • “Pork tenderloins.” – Andy Young
  • “With such flexibility and often appeal from red and white wine lovers alike, Pinot can be well paired with anything from robust BBQ flavours, to a delicate salad.” – Andy Dean

Editor’s Picks:

  • 2019 Brokenwood Indigo Vineyard Pinot Noir, Beechworth (Samuel Smith & Son)
  • 2017 Brockenchack Wines Hare Hunter Pinot Noir, Eden Valley (AIWW – QLD; Select Cellars – NSW; Brockchack Wines – Rest of Aus)
  • 2018 Rob Dolan White Label Pinot Noir, Yarra Valley (Nelson Wine Co.)
  • 2018 Streicker Bridgland Block Pinot Noir, Margaret River (The Wine Gang – WA; Single Vineyard Sellers – VIC/NSW/QLD/TAS; Clairault Streicker Wines – Northern Rivers, NSW/SA/All other enquiries)


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Deborah Jackson

Deb joined Intermedia in 2015 as Editor of National Liquor News and Deputy Editor of The Shout. Since then, she has also worked as the Editor of Beer & Brewer and the New Zealand title, World of Wine....

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