2022 Essay Gamay

Essay Gamay


Out of stock

Out of stock

$0.00 AUD


Tasting Profile

January 2023

The fruit was handled entirely as whole bunches. Fermentation commenced spontaneously with ambient yeasts and lasted 13 days in a stainless-steel vat, followed by pressing, with fermentation concluding in tank (another 14 days). The maturation period was nine months in used French oak, one puncheon and one barrique, where the wine underwent indigenous malolactic fermentation. The wine was bottled without fining and with minimal filtration.

Fragrantly aromatic, the wine opens to notes of ripe strawberry, red currant and red plum with a hint of violet floral. Elements of spice, earthy pepper and confection sweetness from carbonic fermentation add layers and allure. The palate is medium-bodied with a juicy core of red fruit that flows from start to finish along a vibrant line of acid. The tannins are finely detailed and intricately woven into the fruit while adding savoury complexity. Plush, velvety and driven, the wine is drinking very well now but will benefit from further cellaring.


Tasting Profile 2022



Wine Pilot, March 2023

Ken Gargett

Great to see some serious Gamay being made here. The fruit for this came from David Lloyd (Eldridge Estate), who has been the grape’s champion for many years. David sold up in 2022 and this was the last fruit from his reign. The wine saw nine months in a mix of older French oak. A lovely limpid purple colour. The aromas moved through dried herbs, freshly harvested beetroots, dark berries, root vegetables and a hint of woodsmoke. Alluring nose but we move to a more savoury style on the palate with focus and length. Enjoy now and over the next five years. Not second rate Pinot, this is first rate Gamay.

92 points

Wine of the Week, March 2023

Winsor Dobbin

Love the crispness and freshness of this gamay from Port Phillip Estate and outgoing winemaker Glen Hayley. Port Phillip Estate normally only uses estate-grown fruit, but this is a one-off exception to that rule. The grapes were sourced from David Lloyd – a pioneer of the grape variety on the Mornington Peninsula – before he sold up and moved to Tasmania. The wine was made in very small quantities using whole bunch, French oak and malo. You could easily chill this for a few minutes on a warm day, or just enjoy its tangy, bright fruit at room temperature. Its red fruit drive paired well with a chicken and mushroom pie.

Halliday Wine Companion, December 2023

Jane Faulkner

The inaugural release and the first look at gamay for Port Phillip Estate with fruit sourced from Eldridge Estate. 100% whole-bunches in the fermentation leaves a strong impression: stalky, sappy with iodine and herbal tones akin to an Italian digestive in a way. I like its juiciness, the cherry pips and pomegranate tartness and the fresh finish. Enjoy with food to tame its overtness while maximising flavour. Only available at the cellar door.

90 points

The WineFront, June 2023

Gary Walsh

Red cherry, strawberry, a stalky/spicy capsicum element, pretty floral perfume. It’s bright, light to medium-bodied, light peppery tannin, bright and juicy, but also gently savoury, with a crisp finish of excellent length. Thoroughly lovely drinking.

92 points

Reviews 2022


The Vintage

The cold and windy 2021 Winter saw approximately 185 mm of rainfall throughout June, July, and August, slightly below average. Windy conditions continued throughout Spring, with approximately 310 mm of rainfall throughout the period, well above average. This rainfall ensured soils were fully replenished leading into Summer. Cold soils and windy conditions affected flowering in early November, with many of the earlier ripening vineyards in the region experiencing a poor fruit set, thus dramatically reducing yields. The later flowering vineyards benefited from more favourable weather conditions in late November. Summer conditions were ideal, with mild to warm days broken sporadically by favourable rainfall, almost 75 mm in January, ensuring vines had adequate water leading to and through veraison, mid to late January. Ideal conditions throughout February meant ripening was slow and steady. Harvest commenced in early March. The weather remained mild throughout, and harvest progressed at an even pace. While yields were significantly lower than average, fruit quality was excellent with intense flavour concentration and refined acidity.

The Vineyard

Sourced from our friend David Lloyd, this Gamay is a tribute to the pioneering vision of David and his late wife Wendy (1954–2014). David and Wendy planted Gamay vines at their property, Eldridge Estate, in the mid-1990s. David quickly became a leading exponent of the variety, making benchmark Gamay, in various styles, for over 20 years under the Eldridge Estate label. David sold Eldridge Estate in 2022, and we were delighted to access the last Gamay fruit that David harvested. This wine is our first examination of Gamay, our essay and tribute.