Latest vintage available online via Port2Port.
- Soil Low-vigour, stony, clay-rich, shale-derived soil
- Alcohol 13.20%
- Acid 5.96 g/l
- pH 3.29
- Residual Sugar 1.6 g/l
- 95% Barrel Fermentation
- 5% Foudre
- Barrel Ageing 9 months
- 29% 1st fill
- 41% 2nd fill
- 29% 3rd fill
- 1% 4th fill
- 45% Blonde Toast
- 44% Medium Toast
- 11% Medium Long Toast
- French Coopers: Francois Freres 100%
- Yield 22.37 hl/ha 3.20 tons/ha
- Production 4 090 x 12 cases
- Release date – December 2018
After the early and short 2015 and 2016 harvests, 2018, like 2017 was back to our usual timing, beginning at the end of the first week of February, but (a longer harvest) finishing at the end of the first week of March. Budding was even and successful, with higher than usual early Spring temperatures, but an unusually wet November and a cool December affected flowering and fruit-set, resulting in particularly low yields – far lower than our already low yields. The berries were smaller and the bunches were lighter, but the resulting wines were deeper, fuller and more structured. December and January were drier than average, making for relatively easy and successful disease control organically, with February only very slightly wetter than our long term average. A warmer than average February, combined with the very low yields and small berries did however contribute to the riper more opulent style of 2018 compared to 2017. One of the features of 2018 was fairly variable ripening within individual vineyards, and within individual bunches. Picking on taste, combined with analysis, and picking particular areas within individual vineyards at different times, was particularly important in 2018. This required a high level of vigilance and very close teamwork between cellar and vineyard, both of which were carried out with great success. 2018 was an excellent vintage for us.
95 Points - Decanter
94+ Points - Greg Sherwood MW
95 Points - Tim Atkin
93 Points - Dr Owen Bargreen, International Wine Report
93 Points - Christian Eedes
92 Points - Neal Martin, Vinous
95 Andrew Howard MW, Decanter
Showing just a hint of reduction, this is a lovely Chardonnay that takes me back to the Burgundy 2018 en-primeur week in January. Côte de Beaune-like on the nose, with restrained notes of orange box and stoned fruits. This has great focus and grip on the palate and although there is plenty of weight and fleshiness, the prominent acidity keeps all the elements in perfect balance. Perhaps a bit more Corton-Charlemagne than Meursault, this is a very fine, top-class, Chardonnay.
95 Greg Sherwood MW
Chatting to Anthony before tasting the 2018, he warned there might still be a hint of reduction on this young white wine. But to be honest, I found it very fresh, pure and delightfully fragrant, though perhaps aromatically a little more restrained and mineral at the moment, showing more yellow citrus, lemon pastille and wet chalk rather than struck match reduction. There is still a very subtle juvenile lick of salted caramel and vanilla spice from the oak barrel ageing, but on the palate, this is where the real pedigree of this wine is revealed. An ultra tight, pinpoint textural finesse, plenty of core energy and a classically restrained Burgundian dry lemon and limestone finish. Wonderfully intense and focused but simultaneously a suave and supremely balanced Chardonnay from the Walker Bay. Give this wine another 6 months in bottle after release and then indulge at will.
9/10 Alder Yarrow, Vinography, Oct 2022
Pale gold in the glass this wine smells of apples and lemons. In the mouth, bright lemon and green apple notes have a nice brightness and a hint of applesauce on the finish. Potentially a hot vintage? Decent acidity. Spends 9 months in 29% new oak. 13.2% alcohol.