Yarra Valley based vigneron, Phil Sexton lives with his family in the middle of their 80 acre vineyard established on the high north face of the Warramate Ranges in the dress circle of the Yarra Valley. Specialising in Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Giant Steps explore site, micro climatic and clonal differences between several specialized vineyards in the Yarra Valley including their own multi-clonal vineyard and the highly regarded Tarraford vineyard. Focused intently upon reflecting the individual and unique characteristics of each single vineyard, Giant Steps adopts a minimalist approach to winemaking including, whenever possible, vinification using indigenous yeasts and gravity flow transfers.
Made without compromise using 100% hand picked fruit from meticulously maintained Applejack vineyards. Natural winemaking philosophy, while making quality the priority. Minimal intervention in the vineyard and 100% hand-picked. 50% whole bunch, remainder whole berry, indigenous fermentation in 4000L open oak vats. Delestage by gravity and occasional hand plunges. 11 months in new and used French barriques – 30% new, 70% older.
This is a stunning Pinot Noir, it is pretty, structural and has a purity of fruit that is met in equal measure by subtle savoury texture from whole bunches and the delicate spice that comes from new French oak. The palate builds beautifully with a meld of red and black cherry; undergrowth, rhubarb and finely tuned acidity define the mid palate with the complex and long finish a layered expression of fruit and gentle spice. A benchmark example of Australian Pinot Noir. Rating: 97 Points; Patrick Eckel; Wine Reviewer.
Expressively complex with plenty of red-cherry, strawberry and pomegranate aromas, as well as oak spice and sappy notes. The palate has impressive density with focus. The spiced blueberry flavors are intense, fresh and long and there’s such vibrant acidity sustaining the long finish. Rating: 96 Points; Nick Stock for James Suckling
Medium to light red/purple hue, the aroma fusty, earthy, forest floor, a note of oak and a touch of humus. Very rich and ripe, almost opulent flavour with charming fruit sweetness and a succulent core. A delicious wine. Rating: 95 Points; Huon Hooke
This wine shouts Applejack from the rooftops: it’s perfumed, elegant and relatively light-bodied, but with a fireworks display of red fruits and complex, savoury tannins. As with all Giant Steps pinots, it’s not fined or filtered. Rating: 98 Points & Special Value Star; James Halliday; Weekend Australian
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