In 1983, we planted the first vines in our 'Jim Jim' vineyard, situated at 650m. above sea level, in the very cool Macedon Ranges wine region of Victoria with the aim to make a great Australian sparkling wine. We planted Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, the same classic varieties used to make Champagne. We also trained and trellised the vines in the same manner as the Champenoise.
In 1987 we made our first base wine. Left on lees in stainless steel, it slowly took on the characteristics of the wines from France that we were familiar with. Vintage variations made it clear that the key to our success would be to produce a non-vintage style.
Macedon XVI - Our sixteenth release is a blend of Vintages, from 2014 back to 1987 inclusive. All components were aged on lees in old French oak barriques for an average of four years before blending and tirage. The result is a base wine of immense complexity and creamy softness.
The blend is approximately 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. To ensure consistency, each year we bottle only half of the initial blend, the balance being stored, again on yeast lees, until the preparation of the next blend.
This release was bottled in March 2015. After aproximately 3 years on yeast lees in the bottle, with the second fermentation complete, the bead had become fine and the flavour had developed unmistakeable length due to the yeast autolysis in the bottle. Disgorgement commenced in May 2018, with absolutely minimum liquering (only 2g/l) and with minimal SO2. Undoubtedly it will be described as a rich wine.
Palate: The palate is simultaneously full flavoured and yet dry; crisp, yet balanced. In short it is the wine of our dreams - a great Australian sparkling wine!
Awards & Reviews: We haven't sent this out to wine writers yet but watch this space!