2012 Giles

"Giles Pinot Noir has lovely aromatics; bright fresh acidity; stunning wine."
Ben Knight, Sommelier Bottega Melbourne

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Crimson in colour with ruby hues. Fragrant, perfumed aromas of strawberries, cherries and cream, and wild forest berries with subtle hints of cloves and spices. The rich, juicy palate is tightly wound with layers of crushed herbs and mint, rolling into subtle red currant and wild berry fruit flavours, while the beautiful acid balance and fine-grained tannins provide a long and velvety finish.

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2012 Giles

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The beginning of the Adelaide Hills season for the 2012 vintage saw cold winter conditions with below average rainfall. Rainfall was also below average in spring with mild conditions and an early budburst. Flowering and fruit set were affected by persistent morning fogs and drizzly weather, which led to a reduction in crop and smaller bunches. Summer was mild with average temperatures influenced by moderating southerlies off the ocean in January and only two heat events, at New Year and at the end of February. The coldest periods were the second week of January and the second week of February. This provided for slow ripening, which encouraged intense fruit flavours, high natural acidity and good balance. Rainfall leading up to vintage was above average, with the heaviest rainfall events in late January and late February. Temperatures were average going into an early harvest at the beginning of March, warming into an Indian summer in April. This allowed for a long window of picking, finishing on April 20.

In the Bottle

Vintage 2012
Grape Variety 100% pinot noir grapes grown on Stephen and Prue Henschke’s Lenswood vineyard in the Adelaide Hills, planted over 25 years ago.
Technical Details Harvest Date: 29 February-14 March Alcohol: 13% | pH: 3.55 | Acidity: 6.1 g/L |
Maturation Matured on lees in 35% new and 65% used French barriques for 10 months prior to blending and bottling.
Background In 1981, fifth-generation winemaker Stephen Henschke and his wife Prue purchased a property in the Adelaide Hills with the intention of planting varieties well suited to the cooler climate of the region. The vineyard was originally part of a beautiful valley of apple orchards and natural forest that were destroyed by the Ash Wednesday bushfires in 1983. Sitting at an altitude of 550m with an annual average rainfall of 1100mm, the Lenswood vineyard slopes offer not only beautiful views towards the older vine country, but also provide enough sunshine to fully ripen the grapes, together with cooler temperatures to retain natural acidity. The pinot noir vineyard has been named after Charles Giles, an early pioneer whose descendants had managed the property as an apple orchard since 1864.
Cellaring Potential Exceptional vintage, 15+ years (from vintage).

Vintage 2012. February 2014, Lisa Perrotti Brown, eRobertParker.com

Pale ruby-purple colored and endowed with a beautiful perfume of crushed red cherries, red currants, roses and violets plus hints of cinnamon stick and pepper, the light to medium-bodied 2012 Giles Pinot Noir is elegantly fruited in the mouth with a suggestion of finely grained tannins and lively acid to support the perfumed, red berry flavors. It finishes long. Drink it now to 2019+.

Vintage 2012. 20 February 2014, www.winefront.com.au

…It’s particularly fine form. It’s particularly expressive. Sweet mint,lavendar, various dried spice. Then, beneath, meaty berried oomph. It has plush fruit but there’s plenty of herb and floral and spice notes. A beautiful wine. Gorgeous acidity. Polished and pretty with no lack of substance. It’s so fresh and perfumed. It may well be the best of the Giles line. Indeed, I think it is.


Vintage 2012. 24 July 2013, Ross Noble, Mount Barker Courier

Bright crimson with ruby tints, the Giles pinot has perfumes of strawberry, red cherry and spice. The palate presents juicy berry flavours balanced by bracing natural acid and fine grained tannins in a lingering finish.

Vintage 2010 16 November 2011, Kerry Skinner, Illawarra Mercury

From the Adelaide Hills and a wine of finesse from one of Australia's top-shelf producers. Polished and poised with almost 20 different components making up the final blend. Aromatic, tight and bright, cherry, strawberry and plum fruit flavours, spice and savoury characters, silken tannins. Drink with roast duck.

Vintage 2010. October 2011, Gary Walsh

Red cherries, spearmint, roses and subtle spice. Middle weight, lightly sappy and drying in the mouth with a minorly sour edge. Immediately impressed by the persistence and quality of the tannin on the finish. Oak is a part player and the fruit is articulate and pure. Stylish.

Vintage 2008. 4 December 2009, Rick Allen, Manly Daily, Sydney

Good pinot needs to tick a few boxes. A nice aromatic bouquet: this has beautifully fragrant violets and cherry - check. A silkiness in the mouth: it's finegrained and delicate, yet with intense richness of fruit - check. Complexity of flavours: there are layers of dark cherry and red berry flavours, some mint and mixed herbs - check. It's a ripper.

Vintage 2008. March 2010, WBM

The finest Pinot to emerge from the Henschke stable to date. It has a mix of foresty spice and bracken, some oak laid in neatly offering spice and further sweet fragrance. The palate has a wealth of fleshy fruit and ripe glossy tannins.

Vintage 2007. October 2013, Negociants USA,Napa,CA, Wine & Spirits

Prue and Stephen Henschke grow this savory, spicy pinot with a transparent scrim of raspberry flavor, a savory pinot noir without excess alcohol.

Vintage 2007. March 2009, Ray Jordan, West Australian

Plenty happening in this classy pinot from the steep slopes of Henschke’s Lenswood vineyard. Dark cherry and rhubarb-like aromas with a subtle smokiness. The palate is seamless and tightly wound with neatly infused oak, fine tannins and deep powerful fruit. Displays an appealing softness while having excellent cellaring potential with its structure. 91/100.

Vintage 2006. 15 October 2008 Issue, Harey Steiman, Wine Spectator

This red is light and lively, with pretty raspberry and strawberry fruit at the fore…long, vivid finish…90 points.

Vintage 2005. June 2007, Rick Allen, Ciao

This is lovely stuff. It is fine boned, almost delicate, but its smooth silky on the mouth and features that surprising length of flavour that good piont demands. The flavours are red cherry and plum with rose petal complexity. It needs time to open up, but is perfect if you are in the mood for something classy.

Vintage 2004. April 2006, Winewise

If you're a pinot noir purist, this wine will appeal to you. Served in a large format glass, the aromas are captivating and verge on the ethereal. Delicate red fruits merge seamlessly with new oak. The tannins are comparatively low key, yet provide an excellent backbone for the lingering varietal flavour. The acidity and the sheer life of this wine suggest that it is well worth cellaring. Highly Recommended.

Vintage 2004. August 2007, James Halliday, Australian Wine Companion

Spotlessly clean; fragrant, spicy, red and black fruit aromas; an elegant, cherry-accented palate; has poise and length. Rating 94/100.