Cuttings - Chris Pfeiffer - July 2013
By Chris Pfeiffer
Welcome to our “Pfaithful Pfriends of Pfeiffers”,
Having the vintage period behind us, we are now in a position to commence our member’s trips along the East Coast. In fact, on the weekend of June 23 we kicked off with our Brisbane Long Lunch.
It was a glorious day and we certainly had the sun beaming in on us at The Point Bistro in Southbank. It is amusing that we always sit down with the kitchen and work out a running sheet, which by the time the afternoon concludes appears to be around 1 hour late. Plans are made to be broken, especially when you are having a good time. One thing we have learnt from our experience this year is to have a good check of the calendar before choosing a date. The Rugby Test caused us lots of problems in getting there and finding a bed to sleep in. However, after the game on Saturday night, the centre of Brisbane became alive with red shirts in a happy mood. Sadly at our restaurant, there were only 4 glasses of wine to be seen with plenty of beer, and I always thought that Rugby was the gentleman’s game. There are still some places available in Sydney and Canberra, sadly Melbourne is fully booked for those who were thinking about it.
The July Wine Club pack has certainly taken winter into account with lots of full flavour. The 2012 Pfeiffer Chardonnay is still quite tight on the palate with restrained flavours, however it has lovely length and a creaminess on the palate making it suitable for fuller flavoured pork dishes. Then there are the reds. Merlot pops up again and I am sure it will be a treat. Last night we enjoyed a 2006 Pfeiffer Merlot with some roast beef out of the wood stove. It was delicious with a lovely opulence in the mouth and a long soft tannin finish. Merlot is quite often dismissed as a soft wine, easy to drink and quaff. Treated with all the care and devotion you would give Shiraz or Cabernet, you can craft a wine with structure that will reward you with patient cellaring. Our 12 bottle pack team will be able to check this out as they have some of the 2004 Pfeiffer Merlot (9 years old) in their packs. This also happens to be the first Merlot sealed with a screw cap, so you will be surprised with the freshness and liveliness of the wine.
We have just started the long journey called pruning. This year we have been closely assessing our pruning regime to ensure that we make a great start in the vineyard. Great wine certainly starts in the vineyard, so you have to challenge yourself to lift the barPruning has a major impact as it determines the architecture of the vine in the growing season. This is important, if you can promote the growth of the vine in such a way that it spreads the fruit along the arm and keeps the fruit out of the area around the trunk (we call this the crown) then it helps with disease control as you have good circulation of air around the fruit. Also it helps in how we train the foliage during the growing season to get that balance between enough sunlight and not too much, so we avoid burning of the fruit. These frosty mornings are a bit of a challenge, but the glorious afternoons are just heavenly.
In vino veritas,