Bill Downie has been on a wine making odyssey that has seen him work at tiny producers and large wine factories most notably in Australia and Burgundy. Since 2003 Bill and partner Rachel Needoba (a formidable cheese maker!) have also been making Pinot Noir under his own name from the Yarra Valley and subsequently added Mornington Peninsula and Gippsland to the range complemented by a one off wine (or two). The first under the William Downie label was a Yarra Valley Pinot Noir 2003. A wine I had the privilege of tasting on release and I still have a bottle in my cellar. A tasting earlier this year (2013) with industry friends had it more impressive and interesting then some quality Burgundies drunk at the same dinner. Bill and Rachel are based at their farm in West Gippsland.
2012 was well received after a challenging 2011 vintage. The thing I’ve found with Bills wines are they are amazingly consistent year to year. Which is a testament to his ability as a winemaker. This is a wine that shows the class of Gippsland Pinot. Darker, more brooding and darker fruits.
Bill say “The nose shows lifted blackberry, cassis liqueur, violets and subtle rhubarb notes. Reminiscent of the 2008 wine though more finely structured and balanced. Drink 2013-2023.”