It is somewhat appropriate to say ‘Bon anniversaire!’ Not only does the Blue Pyrenees Winery have to take some responsibility for putting the region on the map but its rich history has been interwined with the forward French thinking Liquor giant Remy Martin or Remy Cointreau as it is known now. Here the brand enjoyed the company of stable mate the Champagne house Charles Heidsieck.
This year will be much celebration for this event, and I was lucky to have a sneak peak when winemaker Andrew Koerner came to town for the closing night for Cellar in the City, part of the Crave Festival programme for 2012. The Midnight Harvest Dinner will be one of the highlights on the 16th February 2013 and will be a night to remember.
Of course, the dinner will start off with a glass or two of its namesake Midnight Harvest Sparkling so called because the crop would be handpicked in the coolness in the middle of the night to preserve the freshness of the grapes and their delicate and pure fruit characters. The coolness of the Blue Pyrenees means that their grapes can be picked early enough to retain their acid so the team are usually not having to add any with the flavours being ripe in the citrus realm.
Their sparkling wine accounts for around 20% of their sales according to Andrew. Then there are the reds starting at the varietal range through to the Richardson range which offers incredible value at around the $50 mark. The team focus on producing elegant wines with detailed fruit and all the wines show regional tipicity with pepper and expressive soft fruit. Being smartly priced certainly make these wines an attractive alternative compared to the neighbouring region of Heathcote.
Make sure that you get to the 50th Anniversary celebrations at Blue Pyrenees, 16th February, 2013. Visit
Here’s a taste of the range from the Blue Pyrenees:
Blue Pyrenees 1998 Midnight Cuvee (Magnum) – Lemon zest, ginger and spice with some rye bread with a touch of fruit sweetness (it is dry with a modest 7 – 8 g/L residual sugar). Looking very fresh with the intensity of fruit is looking generous and long for a more than a decade on.
Blue Pyrenees Midnight Cuvee 2009 – ($32) Disgorged in September 2012 leaving the ripe citrus grapefruit and lemon fresh and zesty with some stonefruit softness. The bubbles are soft and gentle and evocative with a long fine finish. A great wine to enjoy with the freshest seafood.
Blue Pyrenees Richardson Shiraz 2004 – ($40 at release (tbc)) Not made every year, this vintage was also Andrew’s first Richardson vintage. Luxurious cinnamon and vanilla oak frame the juicy blackberry fruit. Powdery tannins are soft, velvety and resonant within the elegant structure and a little smoke curls along the finish. A little journey in each sip.
Blue Pyrenees Estate Red 1995 – The Estate Red is one of the Blue Pyrenees’ Reserve range and in this vintage was 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Merlot with a modest alcohol of 13.5%. Juicy with fine tannins and ripe blackcurrant fruit and cloves and sweet garden herbs and liquorice on the finish. Showing some. Considering this is now 17 years old, it just proves that it is a good cellar candidate at the price.
Blue Pyrenees Estate Red 2008 – ($34) Rich vanilla, cinnamon and blackberry with pepper and mint that is typical of the region. Elegant and generous with fine grippy tannins. Enjoy now with food or leave to languish in the cellar.
Blue Pyrenees Merlot 2010 – A very approachable Merlot lavish with plum, earth and cinnamon oak at its heart with a chocolatey finish.
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