I love Pinot in all its three forms: Blanc, Gris and Noir. I am lucky that the vineyard with Pinot Noir is located 900 meters from my cellar and Pinot Blanc about 3 kilometers. We could say “a pinot’s throw away”.
Pinot Blanc 2018 – Impression is a tribute to the Impressionists. Painters who fought heroically against grey. The grapes were on the skins for 7 days. Subsequently, 2/3 of the wine matured in wooden 300 l. French barrels (combination of agate wood + oak) and 1/3 of the wine matured in a stainless steel container. Prior to bottling, the wine from all the containers was combined. The wine was not clarified with bentonite or any other preparation. Noble sediment is a natural part of this craft wine.
Pinot Noir 2018 – Surreal is about a magical moment, about the border between dream and reality. “I’m real,” Alice from Wonderland said. “If I wasn’t real, I wouldn’t be able to cry.” The grapes fermented for 3 and a half weeks in an open vat. Subsequently, it went to 300 l. and 200 l. French oak barrels, where it matured for 10 months. Then all the barrels were combined in a stainless steel container, where the wine was still 4 months.
My Pinot Vineyards
Both vineyards belong to PD Žemberovce. I know those vineyards very well and I also know specific people who work in those vineyards during the year. As it goes in small villages, we have known each other for many years. The winegrowers know from the very beginning, when they cut the vineyards in the winter, that the grapes will end up in my cellar. They know what wine I make from it and therefore the yield is significantly reduced. This is not an anonymous global business relationship. On the contrary, it is a very local matter. A joint effort to understand how Pinot behaves on the volcanic bedrock created in ancient times by the stratovolcano Sitno. Together to create Pinot from Brhloviec.
Pinot and its Terroir
There are many Pinot philosophers – glass holding theorists who always know what the right Pinot should look like. There are few Pinot initiates who practice Pinot in both the vineyard and the cellar. The reason is simple, Pinot is a demanding variety, with a thin skin and a thick bunch. It requires the best locations for your vineyard. There are no compromises with Pinot. Pinot will tell you whether you really have the best positions or are you just talking. It will practically teach you the meaning of the word terroir. Pinot requires patience, intuition and devotion in the cellar. You have to trust him, not rape him with your ego, and he will show you his character as a reward. However, not everyone is ready to look in the mirror and hear the answer to the question. “Pinot, which location is the best?”
I also like other varieties from which I make wine. But I admit that if I had to choose only two varieties from which I would make wine, it would be Pinot Blanc and Pinot Noir. I would have white, I would have red and I would have a lot of bubbles.
The year 2018 was a hot, warm and dry year. The harvest started very early. The berries ripened quickly and as they ripened too fast, the acids were losing. Therefore, we tried to harvest both Pinots soon enough so that the grapes would not over-ripe and lose their freshness.
Pairing with food
Pinot Blanc 2018 – Impression worked for me with creamy saffron risotto and truffles
Pinot Noir 2018 – Surreal. Maybe a surprise, it will not be any meat, but pasta with butter and white truffles