It’s always a delight when the Curly Flat Pinot turns up on the doorstep. One of those deliveries where it skips from the sample to the ‘let’s go out and drink this over dinner’ pile. Of course, after moving house and then going back into lockdown, the going out part isn’t happening, so we belatedly opened these anyway.
Anyway, this Curly Flat Pinot Noir 2019 range features a suite of lovely wines, with one standout.
If you’re new to the Curly Flat game, this Macedon Ranges stalwart has been crafting some of the region’s best wines for decades. Firstly, Curly was driven by the ever-thoughtful Phil Moraghan & wife Jenny. When they parted, Jenny took over running Curly Flat and installed the experienced Matt Harrop in the winery.
Pinot Noir is king here, although the Chardonnay is also excellent and the Pinot Gris a proper textural thing. Historically, there was just the one Curly Flat Pinot Noir (and occasionally a premium selection called The Curly), but this has changed to be three Pinot Noir from different parts of the vineyard.
Despite the spread to a trio, the quality hasn’t wavered – these are top-flight, bold Macedon Pinot Noir wines of depth and swagger. The 19s are right in the zone, too, although I marginally preferred the 18 iterations of the Central & Western. Lovely wines regardless, well worth your attention.
Oh, and you can buy all three direct from Curly Flat here.
Curly Flat Pinot Noir 2019
This ‘original release’ is a blend of the different blocks. In the grand blending tradition, it is my favourite of the lot. Like Vat 9 is the best Tyrrell’s Shiraz, despite the glory of 4 Acres, as it blends the sum of the parts. Wonderfully silken Pinot is this Curly Flat, too – polished and pure Pinot. I’m always intrigued at how ripe and velvety rich this wine is in a region not known for warmth. It has excellent sappy Pinosity; the oak gives a thrust of chocolate in there too. Lithe. Has this sort of ruby fruited, finely balanced perfection to it. A lovely drink that we genuinely enjoyed. In context, this is cheap too – plenty of Grand Cru Burgundy is lesser than this for 10x the price.
Curly Flat Pinot Noir 2019. Best drinking: now to ten years. 18.7/20, 95/100. 13.5%, $53. Would I buy it? Absolutely.
Curly Flat Central Pinot Noir 2019
Drawn from the Central block, planted in 1992 and 100% MV6 clone. Despite the propensity of MV6 to give off lots of big raspberry flavour, this is more tannic, more refined more grainy. It’s a more back palate wine this – a ripe Pinot Noir of dark depths. You don’t see the oak (matured in 27% new, 73% second fill barrels for 16 months). It’s not fleshy, till beetroot, dark berries, ferrous tannins. It’s a wine of piercing stares and a dark future. A wine for tomorrow and all the better for it. I probably like this second after the standard Pinot. But time will be kind as the ferrous tannins integrate.
Curly Flat Central Pinot Noir 2019. Best drinking: now to ten years. 18.5/20, 94/100. 13%, $53. Would I buy it? Yes, but I’d go the standard first.
Curly Flat Western Pinot Noir 2019
A bigger boy. More chocolate oak, beetroot and more alcohol. More heft. Yet the oak treatment isn’t different, just the riper fruit. The extra glycerol makes this a flattering wine, but perhaps not as perfumed, and the finish is just a bit drying. Still a lovely, ripe, yet balanced Macedon Pinot. Except the standard Curly is better formed.
Curly Flat Western Pinot Noir 2019. Best drinking: now to ten years. 18.5/20, 94/100. 14%, $53. Would I buy it? This is my third pick, after the other two. Still thoroughly enjoyable.