2017 Single Vineyard Chardonnay
Clare is not well known for its chardonnays, but in cooler years when there is an abundance of natural rainfall and the ripening period extends well into late February, it can produce some very special wines.
Region: Clare Valley
Vineyard: A single vineyard wine from the old Bourne Estate on Springvale Road in Watervale.
Season Report: A very cool vintage, with higher than average rainfall and lower growing temperatures extending from mid-Spring through until mid-Autumn, well after the fruit was hand-harvested.
Winemaking: The single parcel of Chardonnay was hand-harvested at 12.3 degrees Baume, carefully sorted and gently crushed late February, with some light pressings returned to the free fun. The fermentation commencing in stainless steel before transferring to a selection of new and seasoned French oak hogsheads where it remained for six months. After the primary fermentation had finished, the lees were stirred (battonage) twice weekly to increase the palate weight and creamy texture of the wine. It did not go through malolactic fermentation, thus preserving the natural acid levels and the wines taut structure. The wine was blended, stabilised and bottled in late December 2017.
Cellaring: A cellaring potential for another four to six years.
Tasting Notes: Mid straw in colour with initial youthful green tints, now deepening with age, the nose features lemon zest, hints of tropical melon and peach encircled with subtle savoury French oak chariness. The palate is both textural and complex yet is cleverly framed by its natural acid structure and fine-boned finish. Lemons, peach, and melon fruit flavours predominating.
Food Pairing Suggestion: Caesar salad and crusty bread.