Light, watery golden appearance with greenish tints.
Lightly aromatic nose of white fruits.
Typical of early picked chardonnay with extremely elegant white fruit flavours, wonderful small bead and leaving a clean acidic taste in the mouth.
The low pH and wonderful balance of the wine means it will last for 10 – 20 years, gaining in complexity as it ages.
Vintages continued to get earlier and we picked the chardonnay in mid-February – our earliest start so far. The weather was excellent and the fruit was sound.
The base wine was whole bunch pressed and after 48 hours cold settling it was racked to a stainless-steel tank where it underwent its primary and malo-lactic fermentations. After protein (Bentonite) and cold stabilization, the base wine was transferred to the Lodestone winery, where Michael Sykes undertook the traditional champagne approach of a secondary fermentation in each bottle. At disgorgement 7.5 g/L of sugar was added.
As of November 2018 this wine has had three separate disgorgements, the last in February 2018. It is an excellent aperitif and as some commentators think small bubbles a sign of quality, this is a very high-quality champagne style of wine, indeed as the bubbles are tiny. In blind tastings, it compares very favourably with non-aldehydic styles of champagne, such as Pol Roger.
Light red – not deep.
Mainly in the red fruits spectrum.
This is quite a light bodied pinot noir although the flavour profile is strong. The whole bunch character is much more muted than the 2015 pinot even though at 45% the proportion was the same.
The wine has drunk well from the time of bottling and will continue like this for another five to seven years when I think it will be at its best.
Each successive vintage proves our earliest ever in the twenty year history of our vintages and 2016 was again our earliest with picking of the pinot taking place in the first days of March. Yields were above our long-term average 38HL/ha (2t/acre) and nudged 57HL/ha (3t/acre).
After pressing the wine went into French oak barriques and hogsheads of which 20% was new oak. Malolactic fermentation occurred naturally in the barrels.
Although a lighter coloured wine this is still an intensely flavoured pinot noir and certainly fulfils our mantra of ‘power without weight’. Because we had more than usual we have bottled half of it using diam corks and half under screw cap. It will be an interesting exercise to watch the development of the wine under the differing closure.
Yellow with light gold tints.
Wild field flowers, hazelnut and slight baked green apple aroma with lots of minerals.
Similar to the aroma with the wine being full bodied and quite dry. Long flavoured, having a certain unctuosity in the mouth.
2015 was an early vintage although the pinot blanc is a late ripening variety for a white grape. It cropped at about 49 HL/ha (2.75 tonnes/acre) and was picked at a beaumé of 12.8
The grapes were treated oxidatively so no sulphur was used until after the primary fermentation. The grapes were bag pressed and the juice went to a stainlesssteel tank for 48 hours of settling at 10c. The juice was then racked to old French oak barriques for a mixture of wild and inoculated yeast fermentation. The wine stayed on lees for 9 months with monthly stirring. It was bottled in October 2015 under stelvin closure.
This is perhaps the most elegant of the pinot blanc’s we have made and so saying is less full flavoured than some. We expect it to last exceptionally well.
Grapes were handpicked early at B° 11.0, at a tonnage of 19Ha/Ha (1 tonne/acre).
Crush and Pressing
Immediate bag press with addition of sulphur.
The juice was cold settled for 48 hours and then transfered to French oak barriques, 15% of which were new. The juice was inoculated to start fermentation.
The wine was left on lees in the barrels and underwent fortnightly topping up and batonnage. The wine remained in barrel for 11 months and then moved to stainless steel tank.
All barrels were assessed and all used in the final blend.
Pre bottling sterile filtration undertaken
The wine is relatively low in alcohol, (11.5%), due to the early picking. It is a citric acid tasting style with fairly subdued fruit character. It has developed very slowly as it has aged and as of August 2014 it remains extremely fresh and belies its 5 years of bottle age.
After the incredibly rich and high alcohol (15.5%) 2008 Chardonnay we went to the other extreme with the 2009 – producing a Chablis style wine. It is not a strong fruited wine but is very fresh tasting and is a perfect complement to all types of seafood and majority of Asian styled dishes.
Bright and clear with hints of gold.
White fruits and hints of melon.
Not very full flavoured but the typical Mosquito Hill honey dew melon in evidence. No noticeable wood flavours, so quite an elegant style.
As with all our chardonnay’s this will easily improve in the bottle for seven or so years and then maintain excellent drinking for 5-7 years more.
An early vintage with the fruit picked late in February at beaume of around 12.5. The crop produced about 27HL/ha (1.5 tonnes/acre).
The wine was made oxidatively, so no sulphur was added until the end of the alcoholic fermentation. The grapes were pressed and the juice was cooled in tank for 48 hours and then racked to French oak barrels, with about 20% being new barrels.
This is typical of the slightly lighter (lower in alcohol) style we are now making, with much less overt oak influence.