Established in 1963 and with an annual production of less than 1000 cases in total, Wantirna Estate ranks among the elite of the Yarra Valley icons. Hand crafted terror-driven wines are a reflection of meticulous attention to detail in all aspects of viticulture and winemaking, and a vineyard site that is naturally low-yielding. "You don't need too many fingers to count the number of 'cult' wineries of the 1970s and early 1980s that are still in the hands of their original owners. Fewer still are actually performing better today than ever before. Wantirna Estate is one such winery and its modern success is a culmination of experience, the introduction of fresh ideas and a proven ability to learn. Jeremy Oliver
The chardonnay vines are grown on an east facing, gentle slope allowing early morning and late afternoon sunshine. This aspect is perfect to grow top quality chardonnay grapes. Today the average age of the vines is over 40 years, which adds to the complexity of the fruit.
The chardonnay grapes are hand harvested early in the day and then pressed in an air bag press. The juice is then chilled, settled and inoculated with yeast before being transferred to a cool underground cellar for fermentation in new, one and two year old French oak barrels. The wine is left to age on the yeast lees with regular lees stirring to increase the texture of the wine. After around 11 months, the wine is fined and sent to bottle.
Ripe peachy expression with butter menthol, mint, wheatgerm and spice. Juicy pear and peach, a certain citrus cut through the gloss and glide of this flavoursome little number, some flint, savoury umami character, juicy and chalky through a nice long finish. It’s a proper Chardonnay, and feels pretty much ready, almost raring, to go. Tasted: Oct 19; Alcohol: 13.5%; Price: $80; Closure: Screwcap; Drink: 2019-2024; Rated: 94 Points; Gary Walsh; The Wine Front
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