The 2020 Nautilus Chardonnay is straw coloured with a lifted nose of ripe apricots, brioche and toasted hazelnuts with a hint of flinty complexity. The palate displays stone fruits and honeysuckle along with a nutty complexity from the natural ferments. The palate has good depth and concentration with a refreshingly long finish. This wine has a tight mineral structure and will develop a creamy texture as it matures.
Rains in November & December kept the soil moisture levels up and while January and February were warm and dry, we had sufficient water to get through the season. We picked most of the Chardonnay before Covid lockdown with only one small block picked in lockdown conditions. The 2020 harvest will be remembered as ‘unusual’ given the measures and practices which had to instigate to ensure we all remained safe from the virus. Throughout the harvest, the one thing that always remained on our side was the weather. Perfect ripening conditions with an early arrival of the autumn weather pattern of cool nights and warm, but not hot, days meant for nice slow flavour development. The fruit condition was pristine and some of the best we have seen. Fruit from our own Renwick vineyard has been blended with a small amount of Dijon clone 95 grown by Jim and Debbie Greer. These sites are stony and free draining, giving naturally low yields, fantastic depth of flavour and mineral structure. Over forty per cent of the 2020 blend is now from new Burgundian clonal plantings in our Renwick vineyard which nicely complements our mature clone 15 on the same site.
Handpicked grapes were chilled overnight before gentle pressing direct to barrel without settling. The wine was entirely barreled fermented in French oak barriques (20% new) using indigenous yeast. A short period of lees stirring post ferment adds a textural element to the palate.
While approachable in its youth this wine will further integrate and develop for 3 to 5 years from vintage.
IDEAL FOOD MATCH
Delicious with leek, mushroom & mustard chicken with herby cauliflower rice.
- Alcohol by volume: 13.5%
- Total acid: 5.9g/L
- pH: 3.27
- Residual sugar: Dry
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