The Fusilier vineyard is named in honour of Sam’s father, Major Dermot Neill, who served in the Royal Irish Fusilier Regiment for twenty years before returning home to Dunedin, New Zealand. Planted in 2000, it is 5.6 hectares of Pinot Noir on rolling, alluvial, north-facing terraces at the western end of Felton Road, being bordered by the vineyard of the same name.
This 2018 Fusilier is a tightly- action-packed Pinot. With 65% whole bunch fermentation, maturation being in 30% new French oak, colour is glistening pale ruby-purple, with intense aromas of wild strawberries, black cherries and violets. This is a compact wine that is firmly concentrated and has real presence and depth of fruit in the mouth. It has a fine, fleshy texture, with supple tannins and a long-lingering, lifted finish (for drinking 2021-2027+).