The estate fruit is sourced from Chapman Brook and Crossroads that are both spur and cane pruned, derived from the Gin Gin selection of chardonnay plus Burgundian clones 95 and 76 and one patch of Californian clone 5. Chapman tends to have a cooler continental climate and is the coolest of our estates, whilst Crossroads experiences strong maritime influences of tempering winds and rains. Picking, decided by taste, occurs by both hand and by machine, to achieve the best mix of richness and freshness and spanned from March 6th to the 28th beginning and ending with Gin Gin clone blocks.
An unusual winter with low rainfall in May and July with a completely dry June was followed by a very wet August. A mild cool spring delayed flowering by 10-12 days across our estate vineyards but conditions greatly improved to give warm sunny weather. A “vintage made in the vineyard” could not be more apt; warm humid conditions necessitated timely canopy management to prevent disease and maximize fruit exposure. A wet January (52mm) gave way to a bone-dry February, with mild conditions which accentuated complexity, and delivered grapes with a fine thread of acidity and minerality.
Following gentle pressing and overnight settling, the juice is racked off its heavy solids into Burgundian oak barrels and stainless-steel fermenters, where the alcoholic fermentation occurs with both selected and wild yeasts. Partial malolactic fermentation proceeds to give a balance between rich, round palate weight and floral, mineral fresh elements. The wine then matures with oak on lees (yeast solids) for eleven months, then lots are selected for their fresh, fruit forwardness and subtle oak characters, filtered lightly and bottled before the following harvest.
14.5% alcohol, 6.25 g/l total acidity, 3.24 pH. Suitable for vegetarians.