The very nature of wine writing can mean that the loudest wines get all of the attention.
However, when I reach for a bottle of wine to drink, I more often than not choose quiet wines.For me, quiet wines are the most satisfying to drink as they take you on a journey.
These wines can often be quite reserved on opening, and as a consequence, there is less to say about them, at first that is. But with a little air, they slowly reveal their charms.
For me, quiet wines are the most satisfying to drink as they take you on a journey. With each purposeful sip, you see another element of their character. These wines give you a chance to think and reflect.
Quiet wines tend to have the purest fruit and least amount of winemaking artefact. The gentle approach taken by the winemaker allows expression of the wine’s essence. In contrast, heavy-handed winemaking creates obvious, loud wines. I increasingly find these wines unsatisfying and obtrusive.
The latest quiet wine to capture, and hold, my interest is the 2017 Hoddles Creek Estate PSB Pinot Noir. Sourced from a single, close-planted block of MV6 and Pommard clones, it is almost simplistic on opening. Yes, it is young but thankfully – and refreshingly – not over-fruity. If you are not the patient type, it could fool you into thinking it was one-dimensional, but it is far from it. It has a core of tightly bound fruit that slowly unravels, revealing stylish nuances of raspberry and dark plum with time. Once fully opened, it is aromatically complex and utterly mesmerising. I will be adding a few bottles to my cellar as I expect that it will evolve beautifully with time.
So don’t be afraid to reserve your judgement on a wine. Not everything needs to be revealed on the first taste. In fact, if a wine screams at you, you may find that it will eventually lose its voice.