Back to the Yarra Valley. Tarrawarra is a winery I was very impressed with when it showed its first vintages of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Later, it fell off my radar. I was therefore pleased to be able to do quite a comprehensive tasting there to reacquaint myself with its wines. In this first part, I look at four Chardonnays.
The 2012 Estate Chardonnay shows an array of fruit flavours, with apple and pineapple dominant. It is quite a lean wine, with impressive purity of fruit. There is cream on the palate as well, which comes from the 50% oak treatment (10% new). All elements are well integrated. - A modern Chardonnay, which has been worked to achieve an outcome, but not overly so (94 points).
The 2012 Reserve Chardonnay is a much bigger and richer wine, with 25% new oak treatment. An example where richer is not necessarily better. It is well made, but lacks the subtleness and finesse of the Estate (93 points).
The 2008 Reserve Chardonnay tastes of ripe peach. It is a little broad on the palate, but quite balanced and still fresh. 10% of all these wines undergo malolactic fermentation, by the way (93 points).
The 2005 Reserve Chardonnay is a terrific wine at 9 years of age. The primary fruit is stone fruit, but some oily characteristics are now showing. The wine has great complexity and texture. It is still a fresh wine (95 points).
I was quite impressed with this line-up. It showed assured winemaking, with 30 years experience now. These are cool climate Chardonnays, but with considerable complexity, balance and interest.