For the sake of a bit more wine input I'd like to continue with my insatiable Pinot Noir thirst! This time it had to be Italy and some supermarket stuff. On the one hand an entry level, as a matter effect a high entry level, Pinot Nero from one of the biggest names in Alto Adige: Franz Haas and on the other a frightfully cheap Supermarket Pinot Noir from Weinland Baden (in Baden) which was orchestrated by one of the few German Master of Wine: Jürgen von der Mark. For sure a totally random and admittedly excessively unfair Pinot combination. I guess, a match was not intended!
Franz Haas Pinot Nero 2005, Alto Adige
For many years Franz Haas has been one of the dominating names in little, but very remarkable, Alto Adige in the very north of Italy. Famous for his Gewürztraminers (I admit, I am not very much into this varietal, but his Traminer Aromatico is sumpin'!) and Pinot Noirs. I, a Pinot obsessed person, had to grab for the latter one. Of coures! Besides his grand cuvée “Der Schweizer", today's Pinot Nero is Haas's only Pinot Noir. The grape material for this one came from the villages Pinzon, Glen, Mazon and Montan. Likewise the soils and clones are pretty varying in this Pinot Nero. The ageing of one year took place in French oak barrels.
First, and overhasty statement: I was very surprised about this wine! Why? Later! Second, the colour of the Haas Pinot showed distinct and expected discolourations all over the goblet. The tint seemed rather bright though. Third, the nose was really odd in the first hour. I got fragrances of mint, stern smoke, dark berries, ether, hints of glue, tar and a rugged assortment of various and diffuse savage impressions like hay, undergrowth etc. After an hour the slightly irritating odours like glue and tar decimated into oblivion and a very respectable and edgy bouquet of savagery combined with very well aged fruit - now, dark berries complemented with dark dried cherries - evolved. Later on, approx. one more hour, a kind of noble attitude, probably lower gentry, evolved as well. There was some delightful sublimity and tamed ruggedness in existence. I should say a very versatile Pinot nose! Fourth, the taste! The nasal impressions continued on my palatal. Those impressions were a bit more from the riper side and were backed by an unusually, unusual for its age, strong tannin structure. All in all a very versatile, pretty complex, not too rich but astoundingly long Pinot Noir with a certain amount of wild attributes. In contrast to the colour, the taste seemed to a have a lot of vitality! No doubt about its very decent ***** quality.
Now, back to second! The surprise! I had this wine approx. two and a half years ago. Then, it seemed rather modern’ish, a bit one-dimensional, streamlined and a bit characterless. I had not doubts about the concentration or quality, but I never felt any suspense or enthusiasm! Now, it was a totally different wine!?! That is what I call positive evolution!
Jürgen von der Mark Weinland Baden Pinot Noir 2010
As I have mentioned earlier: a totally unfair Pinot Noir combination. Why? A supermaket wine compared with a big Pinot name! The price! The Haas Pinot cost three times more and isn’t such a mass-product article (although 70000 bottles annual Pinot Nero production isn’t that shabby either, I guess). Why such a combination? Total coincidence and convenience! I assume my prodigious (wine-)bounty was rather limited in this spontaneous situation. Anyway, … let’s check out the Weinland Baden Pinot Noir from 2010:
First, far better label! At least compared to the older one. Second, the colour! It appeared very radiant, pretty light ruby red and overall nicely luscious. Third, the bouquet! In the first 45 to 60 minutes I sensed a rather fruit oriented, a bit jammy and mostly clear raspberry nose. After an hour, the nose started to slip. To slip into a very sweaty, heatedly, rather diffuse and slightly stinky fruit forward and definitely not so fascinatingly delightful nose. Then, it appeared far more stressed and quickly degrading. Over three hours I constantly gave this wine a try, but the convincing first impression … never returned. With regard to fourth - the taste - pretty much the same “evo”. First, a pretty nice, absolutely not thin and very fruitful experience! For such a mass product and price - really convincing! After an hour: very sweet, simple, even a bit obtrusive and short of breath! My recommendation: open it and drink quick – not the worst idea anyway ;-). For sure a consumable ** Pinot Noir. Drink it quick and it might be even better than just that!