This year's Decanter World Wine Awards Regional Trophy for Australian Pinot Noir over £15 went to Bay of Fires, Pinot Noir, Tasmania 2012 (13.5%)

Tasted against:

  • No other Golds in this category


Cool-climate Tasman ia is laying claim to being one of the very best, if not the best, sites in Australia for Burgundy’s main red and white grape varieties, and the 2012 vintage has been a humdinger, at least in the eyes of Bay of Fires winemaker Peter Dredge. ‘Fruit condition, yield and climatic conditions were as close to perfect as I’ve seen; it’s certainly been the best vintage of my five here so far. The wines fermented, matured and came together effortlessly. Such vintages are rare but highly prized – glorious!’

Dredge joined Bay of Fires in 2010 following 12 years at Petaluma, where much of his work was tied to Riesling. For this Trophy winner he blended nine, small batch parcels of fruit from four sites spread throughout Tasmania, each bringing its own personality to the table. ‘The volcanic soils of the Upper Derwent and East Coast sub-regions seem to provide structure and body to the blend, while the alluvial soils of the Coal River Valley and Lower Derwent Valley produce Pinots with finesse and elegance,’ he explains.

The ultimate goal for Bay of Fires is to be considered the finest Pinot producer in Australia, and there’s a sign in the winery that Dredge claims encapsulates this drive: ‘It says “Think Quality. Good enough is not good enough”. I’m not sure who put it up but it’s not coming down in a hurry.’

Written by Decanter