Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir is a red wine from New Zealand. It is made from 100% Pinot Noir fruit sourced from the Marlborough wine-growing region.
Cloudy Bay Vineyards was established in 1985 by Kevin Judd and David Hohnen who were both then at Cape Mentelle Vineyards in Western Australia. Today Cloudy Bay is part of Estates & Wines, owned by Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH). The winery and vineyards are situated in the Wairau Valley in Marlborough at the northern end of New Zealand’s South Island. This unique and cool wine region enjoys a maritime climate with the longest hours of sunshine of any place in New Zealand. Cloudy Bay has estate vineyards located at prime sites within the Wairau Valley as well as long-standing contracts with many growers in region. The winery takes its name from the bay at the eastern extremity of the Wairau Valley, which was named Cloudy Bay by Captain Cook on his voyage to New Zealand in 1770.
Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir was first made in 1989 and the wine-making team has been obsessed with the variety ever since. The grapes for this wine sourced from carefully selected sites located within the southern Wairau Valley, including the Mustang and Barracks vineyards. The Barracks vineyard is an elevated site in the Omaka Valley dedicated almost entirely to Pinot Noir. In the winery, the purpose-built Pinot cellar allows the winemakers to handle as many as 40 unique parcels of wine from 25 different sites with the utmost precision and care.
The Pinot Noir fruit was entirely handpicked and de-stemmed before being gravity fed into the fermentation vessels. 13% of the fermentation was comprised of whole bunches. The fermentations utilised natural occuring yeast populations under carefully monitored conditions. The grape skins were gently plunged with an average of 18 days skin contact. After fermentation the wines were matured in French oak for 12 months, of which 35% was new.