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Hillcrest is located in the heart of Melbourne's picturesque Yarra Valley, one of Australia's oldest wine regions. Planted in 1970, it was one of the pioneers in the re-establishment of the Valley, and it is this vineyard which provides the old-vine resource from which the rare Reserve, Premium and Estate wines are made. Purchased in 1999, the neglected 39-year old vineyard was re-trellised to allow for better canopy management. Now farmed along organic principles, herbicides, pesticides, fertilisers and other systemic spraying have been eliminated. The entire vineyard is unirrigated and the vines must work to support themselves. Recent drought conditions caused little disturbance at Hillcrest as the older vines, having established their own deep root systems over 39 years, drew on moisture deep within the ground to sustain themselves. The result continues to be exquisitely concentrated and healthy fruit. 

50% new French oak. Extremely deep colour; one of those rare pinots that are full-bodied, but not clumsy; resounding with drumbeats of black cherry and satsuma plum, quality oak also playing a role. It makes only one request: like '99 Burgundies, give me as much time as your heart, wallet and other basic instincts will allow. The high quality cork should go the distance. Price: $70.00; Alcohol: 12.8%; Drink By: 2030; Rating: 97 Points; James Halliday

This is seductive and succulent Pinot Noir, a real velvet fog of a wine. Black cherry and raspberry, distinct cooling menthol and liquorice lift, sweet brown spices, earth and bark. Medium bodied, silky smooth and savoury, with ultra-fine, palate saturating tannin, intense tang of acidity, and a slick of black tea tannin and dark fruit on a plush, but well defined super-long finish. Vineyard meets idiosyncratic wine style once again. You like Hillcrest Pinot, you’ll love this release. Rating: 96 Points; Drink: 2017-2028; Price: $70; Date Tasted: April 2015; Alcohol: 13%; Gary Walsh - The Wine Front


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