2022 Golden Plains Chardonnay

Our 2022 Golden Plains Chardonnay is a blend from across the three south-west Victorian regions of Henty, Ballarat, and Geelong. 50% is from the Doeven vineyard at Drumborg in the ultra-cool Henty region, a site strongly influenced by the proximity of the Great Southern Ocean. 30% comes from the Sinclair vineyard at Scotsburn, just south of Ballarat, grown in Ordovician period soils (old seabed), on a 500m elevation ridge 1km south-east of Mt Buninyong. The final 20% is from Ceres Bridge vineyard, with its rocky volcanic topsoil over a limestone base, close to the Barwon River in Geelong.

Growing Season
The 2021/2022 growing season was the third cool season in a row. Cold conditions at budburst and flowering led to small crops, these conditions continued across and post veraison ensuring a later-than-normal harvest.

Handpicked across all blocks, the fruit was whole-bunch pressed to tank, allowing the juice to settle for 24 hours; it was roughly racked to French oak barriques, 20% new. The fermentation occurred with indigenous yeasts in barrel at cool temperatures of 14c. Once dry, partial malolactic occurred, endeavouring to balance natural acid levels, encourage mid-palate power and complement the natural fruit characteristics. The wine spent a total of 8 months in oak maturing on yeast lees, before blending and bottling.

Tasting Note
A bright and pale white gold in the glass. Inviting aromas of lemon balm, chalk, daffodils, a faint almond meal from the lees, subtle oak, and flashes of fresh white nectarine. The palate is piquant and juicy, with mouth-filling flavours of ripe citrus, stone fruit, cashew, and a cool climate, almost saline, mineral streak. With a long palate and lingering flavours matched by a quenching natural acidity, it is hard to stop at one glass.

Independent Review
“Chardonnay from Ballarat, Drumborg, and Geelong. The fleshiness of the fruit here is quite something. It feels welcoming and generous and more-ish. It tastes of stonefruit and citrus, nougat and cedar, hay and sweet, juicy pears. It has excellent linger, and interest, to the finish, and while it’s easy to enjoy it’s more than that; its quality is blatantly clear.  93 Points - Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front (Published 01 February 2024)