We use cookies to operate this website and to improve its usability. Full details of what cookies are, why we use them and how you can manage them can be found by reading our Privacy & Cookies pages. Please note that by using this site you are consenting to the use of cookies.

Home Winners > Winners 2020 > Pinot Noir - Australia

Winner Details

Pinot Noir - Australia

In the past, Australia has threatened the Kiwis supposed Pinot hegemony, but this year they slipped back somewhat. Their solitary Gold put them firmly in the ‘also-ran’ category, very much trailing in the wake of not just New Zealand but also Chile this year.

It wasn’t that the wines weren’t good, we don’t think – just that there were significantly fewer sent in here than in the past. It’s odd, because we know the Aussies can do this grape well, so you’d think they might want to back it a bit more.

The Yarra exerted a disproportionate influence on the medals – almost half our medal-winners came from here. It would be good to see a few more from the Adelaide Hills, Mornington and Tasmania, which have strong regional styles and plenty of proven Pinot credentials.

From The Tasting Teams

‘In terms of price point and quality these were very good. Everyone is trying to find the ideal Pinot Noir but that’s impossible. There were few with balance, finesse and ripe fruits. There were some funky ones as well, which were interesting. Different noses, different textures and flavours we’re not used to.’ Agostinho Leite, Bistrot Pierre at The Royal William Yard

‘The bottom end was really good and competitive. The middle was less exciting, and at the top the wines got exciting. One was stunning: balanced, complex Pinot Noir. It reflected what Australian is good at: precision winemaking.’ Andre Luis Martins, Cavalry and Guards Club

‘It’s amazing how far Australia has come in my lifetime in Pinot Noir. There were some incredible examples at both low and high prices.’ Gary Newborough, The Aristologist

‘There were decent wines here at all price points. They had quite high acidity at times, so it will be interesting to see where they’re at by the end of the year, but there was good typicity. They showed you where you were without being in your face.’ Nigel Lister, St. Swithins Wine Shippers

‘Pinot Noir is not one of my favourite grapes – I tend to like more structure in red wines, but some of these were really good!’ Elisa Soggia, Trivet

Award winners

Found 10 wines

New World: Pinot Noir, Australia

Stonier, Pinot Noir 2016, Mornington Peninsula, Australia

Gold medal winner

'A wine with finesse, showing some ripe plums, mild spices and mushroom notes, as well as dark chocolate cake.' Agostinho Leite, Bistrot Pierre at The Royal William Yard. 'Intense on the nose, with some wet hay as well as cherries and red plums, leading to a meaty palate with cinnamon and a hint of flowers.' Elisa Soggia, Trivet. 'Elegant but bold, with crunchy red berries and a hint of forest floor.' Giancarlo Cuccuru, The Ned.

£16.48 Matthew Clark

Santolin, Gladysdale, Pinot Noir 2018, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia

Silver medal winner

'Opening with fresh red hibiscus tea notes and some gentle tomato leaf aromas, this leads to some light smoked notes on the palate, accompanied by some chalky tannins.' Luís Martins, team leader. 'There's great freshness here, with fresh raspberries and roses, as well as red cherry, some light gamey notes and minerality. Some good tannins.' Romain de Courcy, The Ritz Paris.

£24.00 Oddbins

Yering Station, Village, Pinot Noir 2017, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia

Silver medal winner

'An intense wine on the nose, with red plums and red cherries leading to a dry palate with some earthiness, a hint of violet and a meaty character, with a long finish. Good and complex.' Elisa Soggia, Trivet. 'This has quite a spicy and herbaceous aroma, along with some capsicum notes.' Arturo Scamardella, The Ritz London.

£13.62 Bibendum

Little Eden, Pinot Noir 2017, South Eastern Australia, Australia

Bronze medal winner

'An easy-drinking wine with fresh crushed red fruit notes and some ripe red plum, as well as some gentle herbal aromas, leading to an elegant finish.' Luís Martins, team leader. 'This is showing notes of ripe red berries and dried rose petals, along with some toast and a meaty note.' Romain de Courcy, The Ritz Paris.

£7.79 Bibendum

Bellvale, Quercus, Pinot Noir 2017, Victoria, Australia

Bronze medal winner

'With its strong concentration of black fruits, this is a good food wine, with a lingering finish.' Gary Newborough, The Aristologist. 'This opens with a complex, floral nose with spiced tones, leading to lovely lifted red fruits with well-balanced acidity.' Nigel Lister, St. Swithins Wine Shippers.

£15.56 Jascots Wine Merchants

Heirloom, Velvet Fog, Pinot Noir 2018, Adelaide Hills, South Australia, Australia

Bronze medal winner

'This has good intensity, with fruit notes of cherries, raspberries and currants as well as good oak integration towards an elegant, pleasant finish.' Nuno Pereira, Theo Randall at the InterContinental Hotel. 'There's a savoury bit of smokiness here with some ripe tannins, but still on the fruity profile with some blackcurrant notes.' Arturo Scamardella, The Ritz London.

£37.83 Heirloom Vineyards

Giant Steps, Applejack Vineyard, Pinot Noir 2018, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia

Bronze medal winner

'With its enigmatic, elusive yet enticing nose, this is a beautiful wine that's balanced and complete.' Nigel Lister, St. Swithins Wine Shippers. 'This opens with aromatic red fruits such as raspberry, cherry and cranberry, as well as a touch of smoke. A very fresh wine.' Romain de Courcy, The Ritz Paris.

£24.25 Liberty Wines

Sidewood, Abel, Pinot Noir 2018, Adelaide Hills, South Australia, Australia

Commended medal winner

Kooyong, Massale, Pinot Noir 2018, Victoria, Australia

Commended medal winner

£17.67 Enotria&Coe

Josef Chromy, Pinot Noir 2017, Tasmania, Australia

Commended medal winner

£17.63 Bibendum


Subscribe to the SWA newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter and keep up to date with the latest Sommelier Wine Awards news.