The Kooyong vineyard is located on the Mornington Peninsula at Tuerong, on Miocene sedimentary soils. Our wines are made from domain grown, handpicked grapes and aim to manifest terroir: the integration of our geology and soils with the macroclimate of our region, the mesoclimates of the various sites within our vineyard and the weather of the annual grape growing season. Our cultural operations in the vineyard and practices in the winery endeavour to articulate these unique characteristics diligently, respectfully and without artifice.
The 2014-2015 growing season began with lower than average rainfall throughout the winter. Budburst occurred at a normal time and was followed by a spring that also had lower than average rainfall, along with moderate temperatures. These growing conditions led to vines with less vigour than usual. Flowering conditions were good; however, we received slightly below average yields due to cold conditions experienced during the 2013 flowering period. Several large periods of rainfall throughout the season were managed effectively, and the vineyard remained disease free.
The period between January and late March was relatively cool, with January much cooler than historically usual. With the exception of one rain event, the mild and still weather continued throughout the harvest period. This allowed for a calm yet constant harvest for the viticultural team. Harvest began in late February and was finished in late March.
This single-block wine is sourced from the Faultline vineyard, the largest at Kooyong, yet the resulting wine is sourced from a tiny 0.42 ha block of the now 19-year-old Chardonnay vines. Compared to the Farrago vineyard the soil contains less ironstone and more deep clay, leading to wines containing an earthy depth and a fuller, richer palate. The grapes were gently whole-bunch pressed directly into French oak barriques (15% new), where fermentation occurred spontaneously with ambient yeasts. After fermentation the wine was aged on lees (without battonage) for 12 months, with the only racking occurring directly prior to bottling. The wine was bottled without fining and with minimal filtration.
The 2015 Faultline opens with a classical set of aromas: seaweed, preserved lemon and a touch of stone fruit. More detail comes with time in the glass: notes of ginger, struck match and some lees-derived scents. The long, linear palate is tightly built and based around precise citrus and stone fruit flavours. It uncoils with hints of oatmeal and cashew, culminating in an intense salty acidity. This Faultline will greatly repay patience.
Tangy and redolent of white peach, tangerine and nectarine out of the gates. Tensile, mineral-clad and tightly furled across its aft, reined in by a framework high quality French oak and the oatmeal, truffled curd and reductive tension of extended lees handling. This wine will billow across its structural seams with age. To: 2023.
Ned Goodwin MW
Much more classical Chardonnay Kooyong style here. Cool, finely mealy, tight style. Chablis inspired, no doubt. Creamy peach character still here; a signature of the vineyard. This is very fresh but with some weight, with no malolactic fermentation so it retains that freshness through the finish. It’s not super linear but there is a lovely acid driven vibrancy here, sometimes too fresh. Would it be better if it went through malo, just to fill it out a little? Nice wine regardless.
Powerful, mineral and spicy with incredible precision and an intense acid line. Lemony, smoky, with some matchstick minerality. Such acidity, too. This has amazing depth and focus, and will last a long time.
Gentle and mineral, with an extraordinary core of profoundly pure expressive fruit, this finely balanced chardonnay has a briny, mineral bouquet of grapefruit, pear and apple, matchstick/vanilla oak and spicy notes of clove and cinnamon. It’s long and mouthwatering, with a luxuriant core of pristine fruit artfully knit with spicy new oak, a refreshing acidity and a tangy minerality, finishing with length and focus.
Bran flakes, smoke, tinned grapefruit, tangerine and jasmine. Light, tight and fine, spicy and kissed with oak, ripe lemon zing and juicy grapefruit segments, a little nectarine there too, but sparking with flint and bony charm, and a tense and cool finish of admirable length. Painting with watercolours, perhaps, but a significantly beautiful wine we have here. Love it.