The 2016 Kooyong Clonale is a blend of Chardonnay from our Tuerong and Balnarring vineyards.
The grapes are gently whole-bunch pressed directly into French oak barriques (10% new), where fermentation takes place without inoculation. After fermentation, the wine is aged on lees (without battonage) for 10 months. It is bottled without fining and with minimal filtration.
September 2015 welcomed the beginning of budburst leading to a dry and warm spring. October was 3 degrees above the average temperature and El Niño affected the amount of rain we received. Vine vigour was controlled due to the lack of rainfall with the canopy generous and open. Fruitfulness was up from the previous vintage and flowering and fruit set occurred unhindered. Veraison commenced in early January.
The period between January and mid-March was warmer than historically usual and harvest began at the same time in February as recent vintages. Conditions remained very dry and warm throughout the harvest period, it was a compact vintage finishing in mid-March. The viticultural team worked steadily throughout harvest and delivered healthy and energetic fruit, with ripeness and acidity well balanced.
Aromatically pure and airy, the nose delivers notes of lime, green apple and white peach along with some subtle smoky reduction. The palate offers flavours of grapefruit and nectarine combined with a lovely texture that pushes towards a pithy finish.
This is always a deliciously endearing wine of a bouncy, ample, creamy and curdy disposition, given thrust by a skein of bright acidity, keeping it all on the straight and narrow. There are allusions to stone fruits, but more to baked apple, hay and pear; a whiff of white flower and fern. Some cinnamon oak cuts a gentle swathe across the wine mid-drift to its aft, providing gentle guidelines. A nice drink.
Ned Goodwin MW
Bright, lemony and focused with a lovely stony texture. Bright with lovely acidity and focus here. So juicy and taut showing some lively white plum and pear notes.
Vibrant and stylish, with a creamy, faintly nutty bouquet of peach, bubblegum, and grapefruit lifted by scents of fresh white flowers. It’s long and gentle, with a lively, persistent core of stonefruit and citrus backed by creamy, nutty complexity and wrapped in a soft but refreshing ruby grapefruit acidity.
Back in my Best Cellars days, I had a colleague/mate who would pretty much go through a six pack of this a week as his staffies, let alone the beer that was always sitting in the ice chest, ready for his necking pleasure. He just loved this stuff. It’s been reliably good to drink over the years, even outside my buddy’s approach to it. On target for a comfortable mesh of chardonnay fruit flavour and a racier acid line running through the wine. Sits well in glass with its green apple, nectarine, sandalwood and faint fern-herbal character. The palate is edgy in its texture, like a starched sheet, long though, and offers layers of fruit and gentle savouriness. Very pleasant stuff here.