Jilyara 'Heath Road' Chardonnay 2019 (Margaret River, Western Australia) "...lemon curd, peach, cashew..."
A family-owned and operated vineyard in Wilyabrup, Margaret River. Planted in 1996 by the Cotterell family, the nine hectare vineyard grows predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon, but also Malbec, Petit Verdot, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc. The fruit is managed by hand and owner Craig Cotterell does all the vineyard work himself to ensure a sound and disease-free vineyard. Craig has managed every aspect of the vineyard since the beginning and strives to grow grapes of superior quality. Wines are made by Kate Morgan.
The grapes were harvested in the cool, early hours of the morning and transported directly to the winery. The fruit was then gently pressed to minimise phenolic pick up from the skins. After settling overnight, the juice was racked with a moderate amount of solids to a combination of new and old French oak barrels. The juice was wild fermented by yeast that naturally occur on the grape skins and in the winery. Some stirring was done towards the end of fermentation and periodically throughout maturation to build texture on the palate. Sulphur was added post fermentation to discourage malolactic fermentation and retain freshness. After 10 months in barrel the wine was blended, filtered and bottled.
The 2018 vintage will go down as a classic, great all round year. Flowering and fruit set were also exceptional giving solid yields across WA. Some significant rain events in December set up the vineyard with good levels of ground water to see them through ripening. A relatively cool summer has allowed for slow, steady ripening of whites, retaining high levels of natural acidity. The moderate temperatures continued allowing for optimum ripening conditions for reds resulting in wines with elegance, structure and flavour.
"Bright, light quartz-green; stone fruit (white peach and nectarine) lead the aromas and flavours that mark the variety, sustained by some nutty oak and lemony acidity. Drink sooner than later." - 90 Points, James Halliday