Apogee “Alto” Pinot Gris 2018


In Dr Pirie’s own words, “Very attractive aromatics with complex pear, fragrant florals with “salty” rose, musk and chalky minerals. Mid-bodied with taut acidity and a mild nip of tannins from limited skin contact. The palate is dry but there is a refined roundness and lack of bitterness which comes from our style of winemaking. At this early stage the refreshing natural acidity makes it a perfect seafood wine.”

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The Apogee approach to Pinot Gris winemaking is not dissimilar to the methods employed in the early stages of Pinot Noir winemaking for sparkling. Once the grapes are crushed and pressed the juice is aerated to oxidize and degrade the pink colours from the skin of the grape. This not only changes the colour but also the flavour profile, rendering it more complex and less bitter. Around 10% was fermented in small oak and allowed to proceed through a malo-lactic fermentation to soften acidity and create

Andrew Pirie is one of Australia’s most respected winemakers and has made significant contributions towards the current success of the Australian wine industry. Australia’s first PhD in Viticulture and founder of Pipers Brook, Dr Pirie launched Tasmania onto the world wine scene with a bang when his inaugural 1994 Ninth Island Chardonnay took out the white wine trophy at the International Wine Challenge in London. His name still appears on the label of the wine dubbed by Matthew Jukes and others, as ‘the greatest sparkling wine made outside of Champagne!’ Vintage Pirie 1996.

Dr Pirie has received national acclaim for his contributions to the Australian wine industry. In 2001 he was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for services to the Tasmanian wine and tourism industries. In recognition of his expertise and flair for innovation he was given the rare honour of being nominated as a finalist in the QANTAS/Australian Gourmet Traveller Winemaker of the Year Award in both 2002 and 2003.

Over the last 4 decades, Andrew Pirie has been the most influential figure in the Tasmanian wine industry, initiating and building some of Tasmania’s largest and most important vineyards and wineries including Pipers Brook Vineyard, Ninth Island which he co-founded with his brother David in 1974 and Pirie sparkling in 1999.

Andrew Pirie continues to be involved in the Tasmanian industry and apart from his hands-on role at Apogee, provides brand support for the Pirie range, consults on industry development, conducts climate research and is writing a book on wine terroir.

“I remain passionate about the cool climate wine potential of Tasmania. It is exciting to have been involved in the Tasmanian industry from the early days of its modern rebirth to its current success.”

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