2016 Origine Chardonnay
This is 100% Chardonnay from a lovely, mature site in the Upper Yarra Valley. The vines grow on volcanic red soils on a steep, fast-draining slope at an altitude of 350m. The elevation makes for cooler growing conditions compared with the valley floor. The slower ripening process allows intense, complex aromas and flavours to develop. The cool nights help the grapes retain vital acidity for freshness and drive in the resulting wine.
We picked the grapes by hand when the skins still had a slight green tinge – before they turned soft and golden. At the point of harvesting, the flavours were pitched between citrus and firm stone fruits. We gently pressed the fruit as whole bunches and fermented it in French oak puncheons (20% new) with very tight-grained wood. We stirred the lees occasionally in some barrels to build texture and complexity. We bottled the wine in January 2017.
Once again this highlights the finesse, fragrance and presence you can get from mature vines in the Upper Yarra. It’s vibrant straw-green in colour, with a nose of lime blossom, lemon pith, nectarine and nougat. On the palate, the slightly warmer vintage shows in its succulence, body and intensity of flavour. Zesty natural acidity keeps it tight, with impressive energy and focus through a long, mouth-watering, grapefruit-inflected finish. This elegant wine will age gracefully over several years but it’s already beautifully resolved, full of charm and ready to be enjoyed right away.