When we get taken out to dinner by good people to a fancy restaurant, and they’re choosing the wine, we tend not to argue too much, but nod and accept gracefully. The Spaders did just that, seemingly out of some feeling of debt that we couldn’t quite figure out. We protested initially, then went with the flow.
Of the wines that appeared on the table, there was the 2006 Mondillo Central Otago Pinot Noir that stood out for SWMBO and myself, as well as The Spaders. It’s not a common and accepted occurrence that Pinot Noir wines should age with grace and poise. But when it does, it’s something special, and delicious. The well-known scenario that Bordeaux wines consistently please with age, but it’s Burgundy wines that can give the highest pleasures or the lowest lows, applies here. 2006 in Central Otago wines haven’t matured as satisfyingly as other vintages, and it’s a feeling from the start. Many of them have gone mushroomy, broad or dull. Well not Dominec Mondillo’s wine from Bendigo. Still beautifully elegant with sweet fruit, admittedly with savoury dried herb and undergrowth-like and layers of subtle earthiness. Definitely autumnal. But gorgeous with its sweetness and acid vitality. This danced on our palates, and flowed with poise. There’s just the right amount of texture and line. We just sipped and enjoyed it.