Viticulture: Biodynamically farmed, soils are worked, leaf-pulling is done manually and all fruit is harvested by hand.
Vinification: At harvest, all fruit is received in the winery via gravity (no pumps). Short cuvaison, whole cluster fermentation for one week followed by pneumatic press. All wild yeast fermentation.
Aging: Aged in amphora for 8 months. Vinified without sulfur, no fining or filtration.
Production: Limited production: 2000 bottles
Notes: A Pinot anchored by grace and vigor. Aromas of violets and spice present on the nose. Velvety textures one the palate with succulent fruits and a character that beautifully combines the power and elegance celebrated in Pinot Noir.
This sulfur-free, unfiltered Pinot Noir fermented with stems and whole berries for 10 days, then spent close to 10 months in amphora and had just been bottled when I tasted it in late July 2016. Pit-inflected, mineral-salt-laced fresh sour cherry delivers a refreshingly juicy, invigoratingly tart and piquant performance. With barely a hint of tannin, the feel here is attractively polished and the finish lively, buoyant and mouthwatering. Like most of his experiments, Niger is convinced that this has years ahead of it in bottle, but there’s no way of telling, and I would certainly follow its evolution warily. (A more aggressively fermented and longer-aged 2013 Pinot Noir called “Dominus” was aromatically interesting but disappointingly drying and astringent.)