“Extreme” - That's how I describe the 2021 Chardonnay: powerful, complex, multifaceted and penetratingly long. This in itself brings a dilemma- pricing. I have been told many times recently from all over the world to raise the price drastically, as the Chardonnay is looking like very good value compared to some other Australian wines, not to mention the current prices of good White Burgundy. However, this is not going to happen. The main release will be next year with only a small price rise to account for increases in our cost of production.
As many of you probably know, there were no wines produced at Giaconda from the 2020 vintage due to the bushfires. However we are offering some of the 2021 Estate Vineyard Chardonnay for en primeur pre-orders; the quantity is not large, so order quickly! If you miss out please remember there will be more next year once this wine is bottled and ready to be released.
In lieu of the 2020 vintage not being made, we are also releasing two vintages of Nantua Chardonnay. We have kept back the 2019 to release with the 2021 so as to make a bit more available. These are mini Giacondas so don't miss out! 2019 is ready to drink, whilst I suggest you put the 2021 away for a few years. And in all honesty, these are among the best ever vintages of Nantua.
There is also a Nantua Shiraz from 2019 vintage which is from a declassified part of the Warner Vineyard and represents excellent price/quality rapport. There is plenty to like here and the extended time in bottle has enabled this wine to put on weight: now quite rich with a touch of briar.
ROUSSANNE - this remains a work in progress - witness the 2019 Amphora version, an interesting dry white wine but not quite what I feel reflects the beauty of Roussanne. This time I have created another style, a blend of skin contact amphora and barrel fermented aged wine. This will be released under our Nantua label, not due to a lack of quality: in fact, it's incredibly aromatic and complex on the palate. Nevertheless, I feel I'm still developing an ultimate style for this wine... more news will follow on this next year.
NEBBIOLO - the 2018 continues an upward curve on quality. This release can hold its head high against many a good Barolo in a blind line-up. We are refining this wine year by year with some interesting tweaks in winemaking which are proving to be the catalyst for immense complexity and depth.
PINOT NOIR - an exceptional 2021 will be released next year. At this stage it seems to me to be possibly the best ever! Unfortunately, there will only be 1800 bottles. This wine represents both a new style and winemaking process for Giaconda with more depth and tannin present whilst delivering greater complexity and refinement on the palate. It mostly comes from a small parcel of vineyard planted 10 years ago in a much cooler corner where the Pinot Noir seems to thrive, especially the MV6 clone which is new to us.
There will be some interesting new developments announced in next year’s release, but in the meantime it's worthwhile noting: *We are organic certified across both the vineyard and winery and use very strict traditional winemaking practices e.g. no modern pneumatic press, no filtration or pumping to the bottling line. *Solar power supplies virtually all our electricity and most of the wines are aged deep underground in natural conditions with no cooling or humidification required. *The 2022 vintage (still in progress) is an exceptionally cool year producing wonderful Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. A couple more weeks of fine weather should do the same for the Roussanne, Shiraz and Nebbiolo.
Finally, a word on my personal winemaking philosophy - it's simple! I make the type and style of wine I like to drink and enjoy. I am not interested in the thin, acidic "fashionable" Chardonnay that appeals to many influencers. Our grapes are picked properly ripe and the wine is fermented and aged in small barrels with full malolactic fermentation in the traditional manner of the great white burgundies of years past. The reds are treated in the same manner. I am not interested in light, fruity "gluggable" wines, often accompanied by exaggerated acidity. I aim for serious body (though never heavy) in the wines with good firm tannins.
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