In 2003 Brian Croser planted three Dijon clones of pinot noir at about 350 metres altitude on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. Elevation and proximity to the cold Southern Ocean give Croser’s Foggy Hill site a unique microclimate, dramatically cooler than the nearby shiraz country of McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek – sufficiently so to give Croser great confidence in pinot noir. The vineyard’s pinots showed promise from the first vintage in 2007. But in the warm 2012 season, promise turns to excitement, with a slightly deeper, riper style than I’ve tasted in previous years. The underlying varietal flavour leans towards darker fruits like plum and cherry. This is overlaid with a subtly stalky touch, derived from the stems of whole-bunches, and the intriguing earthy–savoury notes of good pinot. The palate is plush and generous and cut through with silky but quite firm tannins, setting the wine apart from many other Australian pinots.