Chardonnay 2011

Vintage

We had good winter rains after a few seasons of below average rainfall. This was a late season: budburst was approximately 2-3 weeks late, and harvest started similarly behind our standard season (we usually start picking Chardonnay in early/ mid February). This year we picked whites in late February/ early March. Unseasonal rains in March threw a spanner in the works somewhat, but luck and good management helped us dodge most of the bullets. Overall this was a very long vintage with moderate yields which tested Joch’s nerves a little more than usual. 

Winemaking

A gentle wild ferment in the very best oak (100% French oak, 40% of which was brand new), high solids, gentle processing... this wine had it all in terms of winemaking technique. The grapes were pressed straight into barrel after picking, and underwent a natural ferment (relying on yeasts found naturally in the vineyard rather than cultured yeast). Allowing the wine to remaining on high solids gave the wine a chance to develop complexity and depth of flavour, as well as acting as a natural anti-oxidant by scavenging any oxygen lurking about in the barrels. The Chardonnay was bottled straight from barrel. About 10% of the wine underwent malolactic fermentation. 

Tasting Notes

On the nose hazelnut, melon and stone fruit, as well as complex lees character, including ‘struck match’. The palate is complex too, with a fresh nuttiness and citrus characters, overlain with the gorgeous oak and wonderful length. 

Technical Details

Picking Date25th Jan 2011, 3rd March 2011 and 4th March 2011
Alc/Vol13.0%
Bottling Date8th December 2011

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