Ninth Island Chardonnay (2013) - 375mL
per bottle in a dozen or
$300 in a single transaction
Introduction: Ninth Island, although often shrouded by ocean mists, is visible from our vineyards in northern Tasmania. The island name has been used for our range of fresh, early drinking style wines that capture the distinctive cool-climate flavours and nature of Tasmania.
Season: The 2013 growing season was characterised by almost perfect conditions for flowering and fruit set, followed by long warm summer ripening days in the season. As a result of well balanced vines, the small bunches and berries have contributed to our Chardonnay achieving full flavour ripeness with soft expressive tropical aromatics, clean crisp acid and long flowing flavour on the finish, distinctive for our chardonnay grown in this cool maritime climate.
Soil: The grapes were grown on a mixture of the Ferrosols (Volcanic soils) of our Pipers Brook vineyards and Vertosol soils (Black Cracking Clays) of our Tamar Valley vineyards. Both soil types have excellent water holding capacity, offering a steady supply of moisture and nourishment to the vines throughout the growing season.
Viticulture: The vines are spur pruned trellis and grown as a Vertical Shoot Positioning (VSP) system. This helps to expose the maturing bunches to the sun and provides a balanced crop load, thus allowing the fruit to achieve good ripeness with well-balanced flavours. Vineyards in the Tamar and Pipers River/Pipers Brook regions provide long, slow ripening conditions for this otherwise quick-to-ripen variety which enables good flavour accumulation and plenty of natural acidity in the fruit at harvest time.
Winemaking: Our aim in the making of this style is to maximize the natural, cool climate flavours and aromas of chardonnay without the use of oak. The grapes are carefully crushed and de-stemmed using full protective handling techniques that avoid any juice oxidation or browning. The juice is then fermented slowly at cool temperatures in stainless steel vessels and the resultant wine is bottled early under screw cap to capture the fruitiness and freshness, producing a style that is intensely aromatic with a well-integrated crisp acid finish.
Colour: Very bright, lemon yellow, with a hint of lime. Bouquet: Fragrant, lifted aromas of freshly cut white peach, floral apple blossom, lemon and lime peel fruits, with the subtle hints of mineral quartz and talc.
Palate: The palate is clean, fresh and vibrant with longer more stream-lined acid to balance the harmony between fruit flavour richness and a palate cleaning finish. The fruit is concentrated, complex and refreshing, offering a profile of minerals, white peach, apples, lemon and lime peel fruits, all tightly gathered together on the palate with the seamless fresh crisp acid and lingering tropical fruits.
Ageing potential: Drink now to 2016. Likely best years 2013 and 2014.
Food suggestions: This Chardonnay is made for your enjoyment, and yet versatile enough to match with an array of foods; Caesar salad; mussels with tomato and saffron sauce; grilled white fleshed fish, and other sea food dishes. Fettuccine carbonara and Mediterranean style dishes.