2017 Morillon Pinot Noir

Morillon Pinot Noir


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Tasting Profile

May 2019

The Morillon Pinot Noir is sourced from the oldest block at Port Phillip Estate’s Red Hill vineyard. This 0.6 hectare block was planted in 1987 on a site nestled among folds of the hilly country in Red Hill. The iron and magnesium-rich but otherwise weathered basalts confer a savoury, earthy minerality to the wine. With maturity, the original block consistently produces wine with an extra level of structure, balance and intensity. In light of this we bottle a small portion separately as the ultimate expression of Pinot Noir from this vineyard. Harvested in late March, the fruit was fermented in a large-format wooden foudre. The ferment occurred spontaneously with ambient yeasts and lasted 19 days. Following fermentation, the wine was pressed and racked into French oak barriques (of which 20% were new) and underwent indigenous malolactic fermentation. The total maturation period was 14 months. The wine was then bottled without fining or filtration.

Fragrant and bright, the 2017 Morillon Pinot has an open-knit aroma of strawberry, raspberry, dried rose petal and alpine spice. The palate shows hints of sappy red cherry flesh along with a tight line of ultra-fine tannin. Direct and powerful, the palate drives long and finishes with cranberry and blood orange flavoured acidity. Whilst approachable in its youth, this wine will greatly benefit from time in the cellar.

Alcohol 13%


Tasting Profile 2017
Tasting Profile 2016
Tasting Profile 2010



James Halliday Australian Wine Companion 2020

So different to the standard Red Hill bottling. Deeper and darker, closed rather than open and forward. There’s a whole rack of brown spices and cloves smothering the red fruit, firming the palate and leaving more assertive chalky tannins with a Campari note to finish. Drink the standard now, leave this in the cellar to unfurl.

93 points

David Bicknell

The Wine Front, July 2019

It’s a pinot noir with a bit of brood to it. It’s as much red-berried as it is black, but it sits low on the palate, as if grumbling about something. It’s not a bad way for a young pinot noir to present. It’s flecked with spice, woodsmoke, orange rind and musk, the palate offering both tang and cream but mostly savoury-accented fruit. Sticks and stones, so to speak. It’s good now but it will get better.

92+ points

Campbell Mattinson

Reviews 2017
Reviews 2016
Reviews 2010


The Vintage

September 2016 was cold and wet and the predicted La Niña did not fully eventuate. The cold weather continued throughout October and November and the soils remained cool for longer than usual, resulting in a flowering period which was almost twice as long as usual. There was some reduction in fruit-set that resulted in lower than average yields. Throughout the growing season disease pressure was quite high. While the season presented us with challenges, the diligence and hard work of the viticultural team ensured the health of our vineyards. We continue to produce our estate made compost and our fungal compost tea. Our knowledge of our properties continues to evolve, providing a strong foundation for future years. Mild conditions and the occasional rain storm lengthened the harvest period. Picking concluded mid-April, for some of our blocks this was the latest they had been picked in over a decade. The wines are showing a finesse and coolness from the longer growing season, with great acidity and bright flavours.

The Vineyard

The Port Phillip Estate vineyard is located on the Mornington Peninsula at Red Hill, on Eocene volcanic soils. Our wines are made from domain grown, handpicked grapes and aim to manifest terroir: the integration of our geology and soils with the macroclimate of our region, the mesoclimates of the various sites within our vineyard and the weather of the annual grape growing season. Our cultural operations in the vineyard and practices in the winery endeavour to articulate these unique characteristics diligently, respectfully and without artifice.