We had good winter rains after a few seasons of below average rainfall. This was a late season: budburst was approximately 2-3 weeks late, and harvest started similarly behind our standard season (we usually start picking Chardonnay in early/ mid February). This year we picked whites in late February/ early March. Unseasonal rains in March threw a spanner in the works somewhat, but luck and good management helped us dodge most of the bullets. Overall this was a very long vintage with moderate yields which tested Joch’s nerves a little more than usual.
‘Four O’clock’ is all about the art of blending different components of Chardonnay together from our vineyards, all of which have been made in subtly different ways. The aim is to make a wine which is greater than the sum of its parts. Some of the components are fermented in stainless steel, some finish their ferment in old oak barrels and some undergo a ‘wild’ ferment (they are fermented by the wild yeasts which are present in the vineyard). All wines are handled oxidatively, and are very gently pressed. We keep all batches of wine on solids after fermentation, to further protect them from oxidation. This also helps create a more complex wine. None of the batches were allowed to go through the secondary malolactic fermentation, and none were matured in oak.
‘Four O’clock’ is a vibrant, fresh Chardonnay with classic characters of stone fruit (nectarine and white peach) and citrus (lime and pink grapefruit) on the nose. The palate reflects the gorgeous characters you find on the nose. Spring Seed Chardonnay is clean, fresh and has wonderful persistence and length.
|Picking Date||2nd, 3rd, 7th, 25th and 28th February 2011|
|Total Acidity||6.57 g/L|
|Bottling Date||23rd November 2011|