Our 2021 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. 40% 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 10% is from Ceres Bridge vineyard, with its rocky volcanic topsoil over a limestone base, close to the Barwon River in Geelong.
The 2020/2021 growing season was characterised by cool conditions and consistent rainfall. With good winter rains, the vines had a healthy start and mild spring conditions assisted an even flowering. Cool and wetter-than-average growing conditions led to some pressure in the vineyards, but our hands-on viticulture and favourable conditions at key moments allowed the medium to low crop yields to ripen slowly. More cool weather persisted through January and February, and then finally March saw a late patch of sunshine and warmth.
Handpicked across all blocks, the fruit was whole-bunch pressed to tank, and after 24 hours the juice was roughly racked to French oak puncheons and barriques, 25% new. Indigenous fermentation in barrel, with careful monitoring of the individual barrels to ensure that each was captured at its peak in flavour and structural balance. The wine spent a total of 8 months in oak maturing on yeast lees, before blending in tank, lightly filtered, and bottled.
An enticing bouquet of lemon and mandarin citrus, mineral notes woven with subtle oak spice adding depth and complexity. Upon tasting, the wine reveals its balance of beauty and elegance. Orchard fruits initially of granny smith apple and ripe pear, leading to hints of lime zest and fresh acidity balance the wine perfectly. The texture and oak complement the wine by giving mouthfeel and weight.
“Fruit from Ballarat, Henty and Geelong. This is pretty swish. Nougat, lime, yellow peach and pineapple flavours mingle with honeysuckle and custard powder-like notes. It's fresh, flavoursome and direct at once, boasting quite serious length through the finish.” 94 Points - Campbell Mattinson Halliday Wine Companion (Published 02 August 2023)
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