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,

Chris Pfeiffer