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2018 CHARDONNAY, Sexton Vineyard, Giant Steps. Yarra Valley, Australia

Bin:  230

Alcohol percentage:  13%

Area:

Yarra Valley, north of Melbourne, is the leading ‘cool climate’ area in Australia for both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
Sexton Vineyard is described on their website as:
“located on the steep north-facing slopes of the Warramate Ranges at 130 to 210 metres above sea level, alongside the vineyards of Yarra Yering and Coldstream Hills. The topsoil is thin and root systems have established themselves in shallow, gravelly loams above a tough, rocky, clay base. Vigour and bunch yields are naturally low in this environment. Biodynamic vineyard management principles are being introduced with the purpose of further distinguishing the site and improving grape and wine quality.”

Grape variety:

100% Chardonnay, whole bunch pressed, fermented with natural yeasts and matured for 8 months in French oak puncheons (500 litres, twice the classic size), of which 20% were new barrels.

Producer:

In 1997 Phil Sexton set up Innocent Bystander and Giant Steps in the same winery in the trendy town of Healsville, an hour from Melbourne, with a cool bakery and an urban vibe. As he had previously done with Devil’s Lair winery and Little Creatures Brewery in W.A., he has now sold both brands but he remains very much involved with Giant Steps.
Winemaker for Giant Steps since 2003 has been the ultra-talented Steve Flamsteed.

Old Bridge rating:

Refined, gentle, elegant style of new world Chardonnay.

Press review:

“Citrus-driven – zesty, relatively punchy, with mouth-watering lime, together with lime blossom and green almond to nose and palate. The citrus flavours have lovely drive, clarity and (fresh grated zest) perfume. Subtle hints of savoury lees bring mouthfeel, balancing the acidity. Persistent finish, with slate undertones. Very good.” Sarah Ahmed, ‘The Wine Detective’, February 2021

£33.00

£31.35 per bottle in a mixed case of 6 bottles
£29.70 per bottle in a mixed case of 12 bottles