When preparing a presentation, the Bloody Hill Pinot Noir 2019 by Timo Mayer is my choice for the evening. Timo Mayer was born in the Remstal, where I live, but has moved to Australia and produces exceptional individual wines in the cool Yarra Valley. I met Timo on a trip to the region in 2010, and since then, his wines have become a permanent part of my drinking repertoire.
Bloody Hill is a vineyard of around 2.4 hectares, planted on red rocky volcanic soil with an altitude between 300 to 470 metres. Timo chose the name Bloody Hill because the slope is so “bloody steep”.
This wine is the entry-level into Timo Mayer’s Pinot world. Unlike the top wines, the grapes are completely destemmed. However, fermentation also takes place with wild yeasts, and the wines are matured in 300 and 500-litre French oak barrels (30% new wood) and bottled without filtration.
The result is a polished and animating Pinot Noir. It reflects both the cool maritime climate of its origin and its maker’s perfectionist yet unconventional approach: Dark cherries, some wild strawberry, earth, and smoke: fresh acidity, very silky tannins and a medium-long finish.