Soumah Pinot Noir d’Soumah 2020 (Yarra Valley)
It was the vision of Soumah Wines to make wine with the charm of northern Italy but the provenance of the majestic Yarra Valley – and that they definitely achieved.
Soumah, for those wondering is in fact an abbreviation of ‘South of Maroondah Highway’ and is the venture of Brett Butcher who has been involved in the wine business all his life working in domestic and international five-star hotels, on-premise business and then finally settling into his role at Soumah as a premium wine producer. He says, “We focused on the Yarra for its acclaim in producing cool climate, clear varietal wines with savoury elegance. The Soumah raison d’etre is to support this fame with the definitive vineyard site, nurturing viticulture and a focus on quality over quantity.”
Pinot Noir is a very selective grape. It does not like the heat but does like the sun. It likes to be on well drained soils so not good on flat landscapes. It likes warm days but more importantly, cool summer nights. It is so demanding that only a few regions in Australia can aspire to produce a Pinot Noir of any pedigree. The Yarra Valley has attained that status over the decades, and we have set out to support that reputation with our attention to details and first rate vineyard sites. Soumah Pinot Noir d’Soumah 2020 wine sees barrel fermentation which develops the rich flavour and aroma of the wine and a good portion of new barrels adds classic soft oak characters helping the overall integration of the wine.The further we got into winter, the colder and wetter it became to the past 25-year average. Spring continued in this vain with temperatures cooler than average, and rainfall higher, with the dam filling naturally in late November. December bucked the trend with abnormally high temperatures, five days above 35°C degrees and three days above 40°C and very low rainfall. This mirrored the rest of the country where the drought and high temperatures prevailed throughout Queensland and New South Wales. We thought we were staring down a very hot, dry summer to come, however, January and February brought generally cooler weather and significantly higher rainfall than normal (112mm more). Furthermore, the season started to lengthen with picking dates extending out as much as two weeks more than has been the norm recently for some varieties.
Situated an average of 120 metres above sea level, the Soumah vineyard is elevated up off the Valley Floor which gives some protection against winter frosts while gentle slopes help drain the soil. The ancient, mountain derived grey sandy clay loams with broken sandstone offer water holding capacity to protect the vines from summer drought stress. Low fertility and lower summer rainfall naturally limit the crop.
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