2015 produced very fine Chardonnay, albeit in very reduced volumes. Windy conditions and 50mm of rain in mid November led to cane damage and extended (poor) flowering – leading to a 40% crop reduction. Almost no rain fell in December and January, and conditions remained fine until harvest. We believe the combination of low crops, dry weather, and new equipment have produced our greatest Chardonnay vintage yet, but time will tell.
Our ‘Chloe’ is produced from a 0.8 hectare plot located at the north-east corner of the Woodlands Vineyard. The plot lies at the top of a south facing slope where the soil is composed of deep loam topsoil over clay. This plot is the most shaded location on our vineyard- protected on the west, north and east.
This is the second vintage of Chloe produced with our Delta Oscillys Destemmer. This destemmer receives the fruit from our vibrating hooper, and removes the stems by a swinging motion rather than using a traditional beating shaft and rotating cage. This process is much more gentle on the fruit, and has the added advantage that shot berries, dry grapes and unripe grapes remain on the stems (and out of the wine).
This wine was hand picked, with half of the fruit destemmed and pressed to tank for debourbage, and the other half whole bunch pressed to barrel. Fermentation proceeded well, with 100% of the wine fermenting without the addition of yeast. Following fermentation the wine remained in barrel with the lees stirred once a month. This wine was bottled in January 2016 after 11 months in barrel. Forty percent of the barrels used on our 2015 Chloe were new.
The colour of this wine is a bright intense gold. Still a touch closed, the nose is dense and brooding – with a complex of nectarine, peach, pear, and toasty French oak. The palate shows the classic Chardonnay characters of nectarine and white peach. Very dense, powerful, and pristine, this wine has a long life ahead of it.
This wine will be best enjoyed from 2020 – 2025.